Friday, November 25, 2016

Vegan Crepes

I've recently been posting pictures of these to my Instagram account, and some people have expressed interest in wanting to make them. They are delicious and nutritious, so I thought I would share the recipe on my blog. This also ties into my Road Titans posts because Anthony and I ate these on the final morning of Road Titans when we had some extra time on our hands with the 10 am start vs. the 8 am start. This recipe yields about 4 crepes, and one serving for me before my training rides.


For the crepe:

3/4 cup rolled oats
1 banana
a little more than 3/4 cup of coconut almond milk
cinnamon (optional)

For the filling:

1 apple chopped into small pieces
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla

Put a pan or a cast-iron skillet on the stove over medium to medium high heat. First put the oats in a blender like a Vitamix. Blend the oats until they turn into a flour. Then add the banana and the milk. Blend until everything is smooth. Once the skillet is hot melt some coconut oil in the pan, and then pour about 1/4 of your batter into the pan. Spread the batter out using a rubber spatula. Once the crepe is cooked about all the way through flip it to let it finish cooking. Repeat this process until all your crepes are cooked. You could also make pancakes using this recipe if you use less milk, don't spread out the batter, and if you finish the pancakes in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10-15 minutes. With the thicker pancakes I feel that the insides are a little uncooked if you do not finish them in the oven.

For the filling heat a pan over medium to medium high heat. Melt some coconut oil. Then add your apples, your cinnamon, and your vanilla. Stir occasionally, and let this cook for about 5 minutes. After 5 minutes the apples will be nice and soft.

When everything is cooked spread some almond butter on a crepe, add some apple filling, and roll up your crepe. Do this will all your crepes. Add some almond butter to the top of the crepes, and sprinkle the remaining apples over the top too. If you are going for a really long ride, and want some extra juice or if you just love the flavor drizzle some maple syrup over the top. I hope you enjoy this recipe because I know I do.

The Finished Product!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

From Couch to Competitor: Post-Ride Fueling

In previous posts I addressed pre-ride fueling and how to fuel on the bike. This article will discuss how to fuel after an event where you burn 3000-4000 calories in a day like the Road Titans 300 challenge. When you burn so many calories your day needs to revolve around stuffing your face. You need to eat like a ravenous wolf immediately after you hop off the bike. I have seen many people thwart their recovery by becoming distracted by other activities such as standing around, talking, and uploading to Strava right after big rides. The ride you just did is super cool and epic, but you can do other activities and fill your belly at the same time. You may want to take a shower first, so you don't scare off your friends, but refueling needs to take precedence if you want to feel good the next day. Another reason it is necessary to start eating ASAP is because right after long and hard rides is when you body best processes simple sugars. You speed up the recovery process when you get fuel in immediately following a big ride. I prefer to eat muesli soaked in almond milk with a banana and blueberries with cinnamon and almond butter on bread because these things are easy to make and are made quickly. Pasta salad or last night's dinner leftovers are a couple other good suggestions for quick and easy post ride meals.

Me tuning and cleaning a bike after the ride

After we fueled up we drove back to my house. As soon as we got home Anthony made a salad while I washed and tuned our bikes. It is necessary to be sure your bike is clean and functioning well throughout an event like Road Titans. A tuned bike ensures you will not have any mechanical issues throughout the ride. Even though I keep my bike tuned it still doesn't prevent all chaos that can happen in the circus called bike racing and the occasional mechanical does occur. A clean and tuned bike makes the unexpected happen a lot less frequently though. The salad contained spinach, avocado, walnuts, blueberries, strawberries, balsamic, and olive oil. Even though this salad does not have many calories it is packed with vitamins. Those vitamins aid in recovery and help to prevent illness too. I eat a similar salad like this between my post ride meal and dinner on all my training days, and I only get sick once or twice a year. Eat your vegetables!

Anthony's "Epic Salad"

After I finished tuning the bikes we would start preparing dinner. We would cook up some pasta with sauce and beans or we would have sweet potatoes and beans. The pasta or sweet potatoes would help replenish our glycogen stores for the next day, and beans are packed with protein that would help us recover. Rice would work as another good carb to top off glycogen stores before your next workout. I prefer to eat brown rice and brown pasta as the brown varieties contain more fiber and vitamins than white pasta or white rice. The brown rice and brown pasta are also lower glycemic than white rice or white pasta. This means they process slowly and help you feel full for longer than white pasta or white rice. I prefer wheat bread over white bread for the same reasons. You could sub about half a pound of meat for the beans, which is roughly how much I ate back when I ate meat. However, I am doing that vegan thing, so no meat for me anymore. I have been eating vegan for the past two and a half months and was eating vegan at Titans, so I want to point out that it is possible to eat vegan and perform well at long and hard events. However, Anthony was having about half a pound of meat with his dinner because he did not want to try something new at a big event. I agree with not trying something new or different with diet at or around your biggest events.

The bike clean and ready to go for the next day 

As you can see Anthony and I worked well as a team to take care of our fueling and bike maintenance needs throughout Titans. Things always work smoothly when multiple people work together towards a common goal. You can see from my other posts that we ate the equivalent of 5 or 6 meals each day. As my friend Oliver says "You need to feed the speed." So fuel up! 

After dinner we would head straight to bed, so we could do it all again the next day. Rest is just as important as fueling well. If you do not rest your body does not recover, and you will not function very well the next day. You need to get a ton of rest if you want to complete 300 miles in 3 days on a bicycle. Be sure to stay tuned and check out my next post about how the final stage of Titans went. There will also be a surprise post.