Saturday, June 7, 2014

Getting Fit #5 + Orange Marmalade and Almond Oatmeal

For the first time in several weeks, I have a recipe to share with you on a Saturday! Woohoo!

But first, let's check in with Crystal.

This is the fourth segment of my Getting Fit series. This series features my friend Crystal, a rockstar figure skater and fellow oatmeal lover. You can her blog, Confessions of Crystal, and check out her Instagram,@crystalchilcott.

TOA: Hi Crystal! How is your summer going?

Crystal: Hi Lauren! It finally feels like summer here in Colorado. I unfortunately sustained a concussion on Saturday so I haven't been able to skate, but I've enjoyed having time to read a copious amount! How are you? 

TOA: I'm okay. I've been feeling chronically fatigued lately; I experienced the same thing around this time last year. It seems like no matter what time I go to bed, I wake up exhausted. It makes staying active difficult! 

Crystal: Does exercise give you an energy boost? 

TOA: Not particularly. On weekends and Mondays, kind of. Once I get further into the week, I just trudge through my routine and feel dead from beginning to end. 

Crystal: Hmm, do you think a change in routine might help? 

TOA: Maybe. What are you thinking? 

Crystal: Perhaps you could try doing strength before running to change it up a bit or doing intervals. If you did intervals you would lightly jog for a minute and then sprint for thirty seconds. Sometimes that makes my cardio a bit more interesting. 

TOA: Hmm that could work. I like how it's less monotonous than just plain long-distance jogging. However, I'm pleased to report that I've completed a 2.6 mile run a few times since we talked last! 

Crystal: That's great! It is awesome that you're making progress even when you're not feeling your best energy-wise. Would you be willing to try the intervals at least once next week to see how you like them? 

TOA: Definitely. Besides that, should I follow the same routine? 

Crystal: Is your strength routine still challenging but not impossible? 

TOA: That's the perfect way to describe it. Usually during the second set, I feel like there's no way I'll be able to complete all three, but then I can do it and it doesn't kill me—ha!

Crystal: Great! I see no reason to change it then.

TOA: Thanks! Say, I have a question for you. When you're doing hardcore training, what do you eat for breakfast?

Crystal:I almost always have oatmeal and matcha green tea, sometimes together! I almost never repeat bowls of oatmeal and either use one of your recipes or top it with whatever fruits, nuts, or nut butters I have on hand.

TOA: Do you eat before working out, or after?

Crystal: Always before. If I don't eat beforehand I don't think I could make it through a workout or skating session!

TOA: I'm the same way! However, I know many people that wait until after working out because they complain it makes them sick to eat before. That's crazy to me! I'm ravenous in the morning. Similar to me, you're a vegetarian. Do you use any "protein shakes" or anything of that nature?

Crystal: I don't understand breakfast-skippers either! I'm a believer in getting all my nutrients through whole foods and using as little supplements as possible. On exceptionally hard workout days or on days when I feel I need more protein, I sometimes use SunWarrior protein and add it to a smoothie in my NutriBullet. I like that brand because it is from all plant-based sources and has none of the sketchy additives like most protein powders. I also sometimes eat Luna protein bars or Lara Alt bars.

TOA: YAY! I agree. I see no reason to buy protein powders myself. That's what peanut butter is for.

Crystal: Oh, yes, peanut butter is definitely my favorite protein source! It is much more fun to eat peanut butter than drink an unappealing, chemical-ridden, pre-packaged protein shake!

TOA: I agree! Do you eat any differently on days that you work out vs. days that you don't? (Or do you work out every day, haha?)

Crystal: Sunday is my only off day. I'm hungrier on days that I work out so I usually have an extra snack. I like to eat smaller meals five to six times a day, balanced with protein, grains, and fruits and veggies. I find I have the most energy this way whether I work out or not.


Like Crystal, I can handle eating breakfast before a workout. Often, I will eat something somewhat lighter, go for a run, and then come home for round two...because two breakfasts are better than one.

This oatmeal contains a hidden banana, which is a big perk for anyone about to head out for a run, or just a demanding day. I swear by the banana. It is everything.

I used quick oats for this recipe, but regular rolled oats will work just fine. I've been digging the quick oats lately. 

This could help you get on the road (or treadmill) sooner!

Are you a post-workout eater, or a pre-workout eater like Crystal and me? OR are you both? ^_^

Orange Marmalade and Almond Oatmeal

by The Oatmeal Artist
Prep Time: 2 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Ingredients (serves 1)
  • 1 cup milk of choice, or water
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned OR quick oats (I use Country Choice Organic)
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • pinch of salt
  • spoonful of orange marmalade

  1. Bring milk (I use 1/2 c almond milk and 1/2 c water) to a boil, add oats, and reduce heat to medium. (If you'd like to add flax or chia seeds, do so now.)
  2. Add mashed banana and stir into the cooking oats.
  3. Once more of the liquid has absorbed, add almond extract and salt. Stir.
  4. When you're pleased with the consistency of the oatmeal, transfer to a bowl. Add a splash of your milk of choice, swirl in marmalade, and top with any other additional toppings (sliced or slithered almonds, etc.).
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**You can also find hundreds of other oatmeal recipes (as well as tons of other meatless recipes) on my Pinterest account!  You can also like The Oatmeal Artist on Facebook. Thanks!


  1. Great convo! I'm going to follow Crystal's blog too. :) This oatmeal looks great as well, love the flavors! :D

  2. I often eat breakfast before my workouts!! I find that I have more energy! My breakfast is always one of your recipes :)

  3. Since I usually wake up around 5:30 am to work out (I'm crazy, I know), and am running on the track at 6, I don't eat breakfast before morning workouts, since I find that I have enough energy to run 3-4 miles and play tennis for 1-2 more hours. However, I'm usually ravenous by the time I get home, and am usually craving something really cold. Recently, I have been loving banana soft-serve with nut butter after a work out. This oatmeal looks awesome! If only I could get my hands on some orange marmalade...(By the way, do you still crave stove-top oats in the summertime? Here in Alabama I never want anything hot during the summer!

    1. Yes, I do! I'm quite strange, though. I'm chronically cold, and I sometimes use my heat blanket in the summer! I love waking up to a warm breakfast all year long.

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