Breakfast of champions

No sugar, no grains, no milk, yes spinach.

Carrie Golus, AB’91, AM’93

Ten years ago, Lauren (Murphy) Siegel, AB’88 (see “Core Training”), decided she needed a new strategy to lose weight. Although she cycled and even taught spin classes, “I was destressing with frappuccinos and scones,” she says. “I just couldn’t figure out how not to be overweight.” A math major in the College, Siegel started to track her food consumption using a spreadsheet (years before apps made this task simple and fashionable).

Siegel also got serious about lifting weights—so serious that last spring she placed third in the Texas Shredder Classic. At 136 pounds, Siegel can benchpress 105 and deadlift 225.

Siegel now eats the diet that we’re all supposed to be eating but don’t: protein, vegetables, healthy fats, an occasional glass of wine. She eats salad without dressing. She puts unsweetened flax milk in her coffee. She doesn’t eat sugar. When she feels like a treat, she enjoys Ghirardelli 100 percent dark chocolate, plain or topped with almond butter.

For her friends and relatives, “sometimes it’s like having dinner with a vampire,” Siegel says. “I’ll be there with my coffee while everyone else has dessert.” Incredibly, she says it isn’t hard. “Do I want cheesecake because everyone else is having cheesecake? No.”


Bodybuilder’s breakfast

1 c. frozen spinach or kale
2 tbsp. chopped onions
chicken broth powder
½ c. frozen, prepared spaghetti squash
3 mushrooms, sliced
soy sauce
8 grape tomatoes
2 eggs, poached
2 tbsp. full-fat Greek yogurt
fresh herbs (optional)

Place spinach, chopped onions, and a few sprinkles of chicken broth powder in a large glass bowl. Cook four minutes in microwave. Meanwhile poach two eggs.

Add prepared spaghetti squash (see instructions below) and sliced mushrooms to spinach and onions. Cook three minutes in microwave.

To serve, add a splash of soy sauce and top with grape tomatoes (cut in half if desired), poached eggs, yogurt, and fresh herbs, if using.

To prepare spaghetti squash: Poke three holes in the skin of the squash. Microwave for six minutes. Cut in half and scrape out seeds. Put squash back in microwave for three minutes. Scrape cooked squash into a glass bowl. Freeze in small containers for future use.


“We are healthy only to the extent that our ideas are humane.”―Kurt Vonnegut, AM'71, Breakfast of Champions (Photography by Tom Tian, AB’10)