18 January 2011

Breakfast Fuel

Over the next few posts I will be writing about what fuels me. I've always had a healthy diet due in part to my upbringing. My mom gave me the best of foods growing up. I had no processed/refined sugar until I was 3 years old. When I was with a babysitter she'd pack ants on a log or cheese and crackers for my snacks. My Grandma Burch was shocked when she learned I had never had jello as a child! The first time was in 3rd or 4th grade. Anyhow, I am very thankful that my tastebuds developed with real food and hardly any sugar or fat and cholesterol laden fast food. 2011 is the first time I've ever eliminated a full food group from the spectrum. I'm a strong believer in moderation and simply wanted to try the vegetarian life for a year; I also have a fair amount of all or nothing thinking which is great juxtaposition for the previous statement. So I threw in the added challenge of also eliminating strong drink as well for 2011...go big or go home!?

As a youngster I can remember getting into the huge Quaker oats container. I would eat oats raw starting at 2 years old. I would simply grab a handful and down the hatch they went. In elementary school I remember packing them in ziploc baggies for an afterschool snack at the park. As the years went by I graduated to the instant oatmeal packets. My favorites were Maple 'N Brown Sugar and Peaches and Cream. This continued through high school and the first year of college. I then had a Food and Nutrition class at CSU which really opened my eyes to the amount of sugar they add to just about every product on the market. I then took action and decided to start weening myself of the sugar I had no idea I was ingesting in every meal. Step one: Ditch the instant oatmeal packets. Step 2: Engineer my own oats.

The first recipe circa 1999 was quite rudimentary: oats, milk, raisins, and cinnamon. For oat eating sustainability I knew I needed to get more creative. The following recipe is now being disclosed to the public for your own consumption. It is the evolution of 10+ years of research and development from the RWB Oat Refinery Labs:

1 Cup Old Fashioned Oats
2/3 Cup Powdered Milk
1 Heaping Spoonful of Wheat Germ
1 Heaping Spoonful of Ground Flax Seed or Chia Seed (Alternate every day for best results and nutrition)
1 Hearty Sprinkling of Cinnamon
1 Hearty Sprinkling of Nutmeg
1 Good amount of Raisins, Dates, or Figs (Alternate every day for for variety)
1 Big Handful of Walnuts, Pecans, or Cashews (Alternate every day so you don't go nuts) pun intended...
2 Heaping Spoonfuls of Sunflower seeds or Pumpkin Seeds aka Pepitas...(self explanatory)
3 Large Spoonfuls of bluberries, raspberries, strawberries (the more the merrier when mixed)
When you need to splurge: Pour in some real Maple syrup, honey, or agave nectar (I prefer Maple)

No joke, I eat this 98% of mornings and wash it down with a 20+ oz. cup of Celestial Seasonings India Spice Chai Tea or Earl Grey. This tastes even more amazing after a solid run on a cold morn!

As for running, next up is the Frost Giant 5K/10K in Estes Park, January 30!


  1. Why powdered milk? Just curious

  2. The powdered milk evolved after 6 summers of guiding backpack trips and using it daily in the wilderness. More so for portability reasons- I can simply make the mix, just add water and microwave/heat- lightweight to carry the mix and never having to think about milk going bad if I'm on the road. It's also cheaper than the liquid form. I read you got into UTMB! Congrats!

  3. hey ryan, great meeting you on this morning's run

    this recipe is killer. i too am a big fan of the chia, seed, and date approach. i'm going to have to try the powdered milk thing though; that's genious. i'd love to be able to take my oatmeal on backpack trips.

    hopefully see you on another run in the near future


  4. Awesome to hit the roads/trails with you Brendan! I'm excited for your race at SJS 50- mtn running at its finest! Look forward to running with you more in 2011.

  5. thats a solid recipe sir! I wish you all the best at American River, and hopefully we'll get a chance to hang out this year (btw I believe a celebration is in order for the both of us).