Monday, March 21, 2011

NSFW, but safe for work.

2011 Not Sorry for Forgetting Work Ride.

Details here.

I did last years inaugural event. Total blast. You should do it, too.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

More Protein? Greek Yogurt and Whey Powder

The "Fuel" chapter of Friel's Training Bible suggests one should observe their calorie needs and eat 25% of those calories from protein sources. Fair enough.

I started using My Fitness Pal to help in that regard. To my surprise, I only eat about 60-80g of protein a day. Even on workout days where I get to eat another 500-1500 calories over my baseline, I have trouble breaking 125g. This amounts to being about 9-15% of my daily calorie intake.

While I've made some changes in my diet to consume more protein (packing some tuna, cottage cheese, string cheese, etc. with my lunch), I still fall 20-40g short almost every day.

I have noticed that with more protein comes less overall hunger. I have a sneaking suspicion "low carb" diets work by shocking your body into telling your brain that you're full on 800-1000 calories a day. But that's neither here nor there...

I did some research and asked some questions, the responses from everyone included "greek yogurt" and "whey powder".

I have been hesitant to try whey powder. I tried it in the past and could not stick with it because it tasted so horribly awful.

On top of that, I'm not really a big fan of nutritional supplements in general, but in the quest for more protein without inconveniencing my carbohydrate-loving family, a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do. I picked up some "NNW" peanut butter and chocolate flavored whey powder from the grocery store. It was the least expensive variety and it is also marketed by a company in Gretna, Nebraska. Inexpensive + Local = Win.

The flavor of NNW is pretty light compared with the chocolate twinlab stuff I bought years ago, but not so light it's rendered tasteless. I tried some with a cup of skim milk and was pleasantly surprised.

I also bought four varieties of Greek Yogurt to test out/review this week.
  • Yoplait Greek
  • Dannon Greek
  • Anderson Erickson Greek 
  • Athenos Strained Greek
All of these are plain and fat-free. The Yoplait and Anderson-Erickson come in 6oz containers. The Dannon is a smaller 5.3oz container. The Athenos is a 2-serving 16oz tub. The protein content of each varies between 17 and 23g.

Why "plain" Greek yogurt? Simple: the flavored varieties of Greek yogurt are loaded with sugar. If I'm eating a dairy product with that much added sugar, it better be served over a split banana, drenched in chocolate syrup and topped with a maraschino cherry. Just sayin'.

Here is what I would choose in order of taste:
  • Anderson-Erickson
  • Dannon
  • Athenos
  • Yoplait
Yoplait is mouth-puckeringly sour. I would imagine that mixing it with ripe fruit would be pretty tasty.

I'm going to wait a couple of weeks before deciding whether or not the added protein is beneficial.