This homemade granola cereal--known in Europe as muesli--is packed with an unbeatable combination of slow-releasing carbs and quality nutrients to fuel your morning run. Eat it like you would cereal, with one exception--yogurt instead of milk.
The creator: This past October, Oakley-sponsored triathlete Chrissie Wellington set a new course record at the Ironman World Championship triathlon--a race she has won the past three consecutive years. Wellington credits her remarkable success to a supportive family, inner drive and, of course, natural athletic ability. "I never realized I had a talent for endurance sports until I tried," she says. "I think people have untapped talents, and I've shown what you can achieve if you devote your life to tapping into those talents."
Wellington says she consumes about 4,000 to 5,000 calories per day, a large proportion from complex carbohydrates such as couscous, brown rice, bulgur wheat, nuts and seeds. In addition to a daily intake of fruits, veggies, chicken and fish, Wellington consumes red meat once a week.
"My diet plays a huge part in fueling my training and recovery," she says. "It's the fuel I use to power me toward success." Wellington is known for her substantial breakfasts: Prior to her first training session, she starts off the day with a banana topped with tahini and unprocessed honey. Before her second training session, Wellington eats this homemade muesli, which she jokingly refers to as the "breakfast of champions."
The nutritionist's take: This recipe is full of nature's rock stars. The nuts and seeds have tremendous amounts of nutrients that runners need such as magnesium, vitamins and unsaturated fats. The oats and seven-grain cereal provide low glycemic index carbs, which studies show can improve endurance when eaten a few hours before exercise. Yogurt improves digestive and immune health, and also contains calcium to help combat stress fractures.
- 3/4 cup organic oatmeal
- 3/4 cup seven-grain cereal (such as Kashi)
- 1/4 cup dried plums or apricots (cut into small pieces)
- 2 tbsp. unsalted mixed nuts
- 1 tbsp. shredded coconut
- 1 tbsp. pumpkin seeds
- 1 tbsp. sunflower seeds
- 2 tbsp. unfiltered, unprocessed honey
- 1 1/2 cups plain yogurt
Directions: Combine dry ingredients in a large, industrial-sized bowl. Mix in 11/2 cups of plain yogurt until thoroughly coated. Drizzle honey over mixture. Makes two servings.
Nutritional info per serving: 692 calories, 18 g fat (5 g saturated fat); 113 g carbohydrates (13 g fîber, 41 g sugar), 28 g protein