October 23, 2013

Power oatmeal for your long runs

Recently we went to Bargain Hunt (do you have one of these near you?!) to continue the epic-to-my-kids search for Halloween costumes. According to their excited yelling and shrieking, just about any costume on any store rack would work, but I like to find the balance of a shriek-worthy costume with a wallet-friendly price. 

From the moment we entered Bargain Hunt, a store that I am in love with that sells overstocks and other discount items, they could not stop the river of exclamations for at least 30 solid minutes. Every costume was just so amazing to them! Angry Birds, Star Wars, a hot dog (!!), Spider Man (of course), Ninja Turtles, Harry Potter, and even sexy devil ladies. The twins do not discriminate against gender-specific costumes. 

We finally settled on two Jango Fetts ($7.99 each) for the twins, one Jedi Knight ($12.99) for Enoch, and a nerd (free creation from home) for Isabella. We'll give the nerd some Star Wars trading cards or DVDs so that she fits in with the theme. 

Lesson learned: my kids would be happy with any costume, and I am definitely happy with a cheap(ish) and easy costume. If I wasn't so distracted by house hunting, which we are currently sick of, I maybe would have pushed harder for homemade costumes. Big maybe. 

Something else that I like easy: breakfast. I hate dirtying three dishes for one breakfast, so putting multiple ingredients in one bowl and turning it into something delicious brings me great joy. Emphasis on the great

So here's my breakfast solution. 

What I wanted: delicious, filling, healthy, easy on your stomach, enough power to get you through (or at least started) on a long run. 

The solution: easy oatmeal with amazing add-ins. 

How to: 
  1. Boil water in a teapot, which BTW doesn't count as dirtying a dish because the pot just boils water all the time. Not a lot of maintenance there. 
  2. Fill a large bowl with the amount of dried oatmeal flakes (I use quick oats) that you would like. Don't worry about getting too much. You can always save and reheat leftovers. 
  3. Pour boiling water over the oats until it just covers them. No measuring required -- see how easy that was!
  4. Let sit for 5-10 minutes. Five minutes equals firmer oats, and 10 minutes equals mushier oats. Plus if you forget and go over 10 minutes, it's really not a big deal. You'll just come back to cold oats and have to stick them in the microwave for a minute
  5. Stir in amazing add-ins. My current favorites are maca powder, hemp hearts, cashew butter, local honey (gotta battle allergies), sea salt, almond milk, and kefir. Plus I like to top it with frozen blueberries or a chopped up banana sometimes. 


And what will the results of this easy-peasy, one-bowl breakfast be? 

Instead of this.


You'll get this.


And run like this.


And live until this.*


* Living until 90 (and the happiness of a four year old and the running skills of Mo Farah) not guaranteed. But wouldn't that be boss?