Archives for category: Carb Loading

I’m kind of hoping this [post] is just like friendships I have with my high school girl friends… we pick up just where we left off despite the distance and in this case the time that has past. So it’s been little while… enough time that there is now three of us, which has absorbed time like never before.

Fast forward to April 2016, the Happy Runner is carb loading again! This time [finally] for the London Marathon. The 6th and final World Major Marathon.

Amongst the white bread, fruit juice and Powerade the nerves were obvious. Well to be honest they were my nerves. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again… support crew is a tough job, sometimes I think I’d rather be the one running!

As usual I had nothing to worry about… so very proud.

Another Marathon and this time another team member to help cheer on the Happy Runner.

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Thank you London…

  • 10 years of training
  • 4 countries
  • 6 marathons
  • New York, Berlin, Boston, Chicago, Tokyo, London
  • 253.2km
  • Way too many grams of carbs to count
  • 6 World Major Marathon medals
  • 1 awesome support crew!
  • 1 six Star WMM medal
  • 1 of the first 10 Australians to ever complete all 6 World Major Marathons

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www.lovethycarbs.comIt’s one of the most iconic races you can run when it comes to organised fun runs in Australia. So much so you can’t have a complete set of race medals until you have one from this one! But in saying that Sydney’s City 2 Surf is also a course you need to respect, 14km of rolling hills that all make it worth while once you hit beautiful Bondi Beach. Therefore while hopefully your training will physically get you to the finish line your race nutrition is the icing on the cake and may just be the difference between a run that sees you struggle through each km and feeling great and enjoying the journey!

www.lovethycarbs.comHere’s 5 key race nutrition tips to help ensure you make the most of the 14km to Bondi:

1. Carb it up the night before: I like to keep things pretty simple the night before a race. No spicy Indian or 5 course banquet… But something you’re used to, for me it’s an obligatory bowl of pasta with a basic tomato based sauce and a glass of juice. In short; high in carbs and low in fat and fibre to ensure you’ve stoked the fire ready to burn through 14km.

2. Hydrate well in the lead up: while the weather is still cool and you may not sweat too much starting the race well hydrated is key. Not only are you more likely to perform at your best but it will also help reduce fatigue setting in keeping you switched on and in the right mind to achieve your goal. Therefore ensure your keeping up the fluids the day before with  water, sports drinks, and or juices, the later two also contain carbs which can help too if you find you struggle with appetite prior to a race.

www.lovethycarbs.com3. Don’t forget your pre-race fuel: while it will probably be an early start for most try to top up your fuel stores about 1-2hours before you run. Toast with honey, jam on crumpets, banana and a sports drink, smoothie, or even a bowl of cereal and milk. What ever your preference again go high carbs and low fat and fibre and include beverages to ensure you line up in a hydrated state.

4. Stick to what you know: many have unfortunately learnt this lesson the hard way… Don’t eat or try anything new that you have already practiced in training. It’s definitely not a good idea to eat new foods or try different brands prior to a race or the day before for that matter. You want to eliminate any variables and control the things you can when it comes to races and the beauty about nutrition us that you can (well most of the time!). Definitely stick to what you know works for you.

www.lovethycarbs.com5. Follow your race nutrition plan: Hopefully you have already been practicing your race nutrition during training runs so you know what foods or beverages you’ll take in along the 14km course. And while many will finish within 90min and may not need a lot during that time other than drinks throughout its best to be prepared. If you use a pace band (a wrist band with your timing goals for key km marks) mark on it where the drink stations will be and when you will eat if you plan to have a carb gel or snack. What ever your race plan stick to it as best you can, and if you don’t have a plan set one!

Oh and don’t forget to rehydrate with water or a sports drink before you celebrate with other beverages!

Looking for a yum recovery brekkie, try this one… A runner’s recovery

It’s true… I think the common dietary staple that’s a prominent member of a major food group in Australia should be suing for defamation of character.

www.lovethycarbs.comPasta’s had a hard time of it over the past decade or so. Mr Atkins (rest his soul) has a lot to answer for. While there was a short reprieve there for a few years when fat was seen as the ultimate dietary enemy, and to be avoided at all costs, pasta made a resurgence back to dinner tables everywhere (well that could be a little exaggeration).

Sadly it’s back in the dog house and being shoved to the back of the pantry behind the quinoa, amaranth and other supergrains.
And if it hasn’t enough problems of its own, pasta is also the poster child of high carb foods (which are blamed for making us fat!) and heaven forbid it passes your lips after 3pm.

www.lovethycarbs.comSo I think it’s time to uncover the truth… here’s 5 reasons to reunite with a little fettuccine, fusilli or tagliatelle.

  1. Pasta like other high carb foods don’t make us fat. An imbalance of energy-in with energy-out is what makes us stack on the kilos. And remember carbs provide the same amount of energy per gram as protein.
  2. Pasta is low GI, and low GI foods help you feel fuller for longer
  3. A half a cup serve of cooked wholegrain pasta provides around 395 kJ (or less than 100 cal) which is about the same as 1/2 a cup of cooked quinoa.
  4. Choosing a high fibre or whole grain pasta can help boost the fibre in your diet, especially kids diets
  5. Regular pasta is made using durum wheat which is a type of wheat higher in protein (this one’s just a fun fact to impress your friends!)

….and you can buy a 500g bag of pasta for less than a dollar, endurance athletes would be lost without it and it helps prop up you B vitamin intake.

Here’s a pasta dish that often appears in our weekly dinner rotation.

Enjoy, B xx

www.lovethycarbs.comZUCCHINI & PESTO PASTA

Ingredients:

  • 200g of spaghetti (I used Vetta Pasta’s Low GI, High Fibre spaghetti)
  • 2 large zucchini, thinly sliced longways (I used a V-Slicer)
  • 1 punnet of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup of pitted olives, sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 small jar of pesto (or you could make your own)

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  1. Cook spaghetti
  2. Stir-fry tomatoes, olives and garlic for about 1-2 minutes
  3. Add zucchini to the tomato mixture and lightly toss through until the zucchini becomes soft
  4. Add the cooked spaghetti and pesto to the tomato and zucchini mixture and stir through
  5. Serve on its own or with cooked and sliced chicken breast strips

www.lovethycarbs.comNutritional Profile (per serve): serves 4

  • Energy – 1430kJ / 340cal
  • Protein – 10.5g
  • Total Fat – 14.1g
  • Sat Fat – 2.1g
  • Carbs – 39.5g
  • Sugars – 4.8g
  • Fibre – 4.6g
  • Sodium – 770mg

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Are you nutrition ready?

I think I could count on one hand the number of night time runs I’ve completed! I’m definitely an early bird when it comes to training which also means I’ve mastered my morning pre-training snack. However with the Nike She Runs 10km on tonight I’ll need to put a little more thought into it.

Seeing as the run starts at 6pm I’m planning on a pretty balanced lunch around 12 to 1pm and then a high carb pre-race snack about 3:30-4pm. It’s about ensuring you’ve topped up fuel stores and at the same time given your system enough time to have emptied the stomach.

Here’s a check list to help plan your pre-race snack…

It should:
– be high in carbs
– be low in fat and fibre
– be a snack that you know doesn’t upset the stomach
– include fluids
– and be enjoyable

High carb snack ideas:
– crumpets and honey
– banana and yoghurt
– toast and juice
– a bowl of cereal and milk
– pikelets and fruit
– english muffin and a sports drink

Remember your pre-race snack or meal should be something that’s easily digested, that provides energy from carbs yet is light and doesn’t leave you feeling heavy and lethargic. If you find you’re a little nervous before a race, and therefore not sure you can stomach food, try a liquid snack such as a sports drink, juice or cordial, or a home made smoothie.

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Try a high carb liquid snack if you can’t stomach food pre-race

And don’t forget hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

While it’s probably going to be a cool night and you’re less likely to sweat as much as you would running in the heat you’ll still need to ensure that you start the race well hydrated to allow you to perform at your best. Even being just slightly dehydrated can effect your race.

And lastly after you cross the finish line aim to recover with water or a sports drink before heading for a more celebratory bevvy.

I’m excited about the run tonight, see you there!

www.lovethycarbs.com

My partners in crime at last years Nike She Runs #OUTFITrunners

 

Having missed an opportunity through the week, Shrove Tuesday (aka Pancake Day), to indulge in one of my favourite dishes I felt it only fair and also necessary that I go against tradition and whip up a batch of pancakes on Sunday… so I’m 5 days late, who’s counting!

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Pancakes taste better on Sundays!

After flicking through a number of my favourite picture books, aah I mean cookbooks, without much luck, I opted to go with the basics. In other words I couldn’t find a recipe I already had the ingredients for in the pantry.

So here is my very basic pancake batter. It only has three ingredients (I told you it was basic) making it really versatile.

What you need (ingredients):

  • 1 cup self-raisning flour (a mix of wholemeal and white flour if you want to include a little fibre)
  • 1 cup (250ml) of skim milk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
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1 2 3… eggs. flour. milk.

How to get from ingredients to pancakes (method):

Add the flour, egg and half the milk to a large bowl and whisk together. Continue to add the rest of the milk gradually as you whisk. If you like your pancakes thick add a little more flour and if you like them thin or crepe like add a little more milk. Once you have a smooth batter you’re ready to go. Pour the batter into a flat pan over a medium heat, you can make your pancakes as big or little as you like by the amount of batter you add in one go.

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tsssss…

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Pancake production line.

The beauty about this recipe is you can add other ingredients into the batter. I usually add chunks of fresh bananas or berries, for sweetness and texture.

While I haven’t added any table sugar to the batter you can. I have a sweet tooth so I like to add the sweetness at the table with plain or flavoured yoghurt, fruit, maple syrup (to be honest I just can’t have pancakes without this delicious golden brown syrup), lemon juice and brown sugar, sprinkling of icing sugar and thinly sliced strawberries with crushed almonds on top, a little Nutella with raspberries… and I could go on.

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Ready to go with a side of passionfruit yoghurt and maple syrup.

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mmmmm…

What’s more you can also go savoury with this batter by including corn (fresh or canned) or by topping your pancakes with avocado and lemon juice, scrambled egg or smoked salmon and cream cheese.

I always have left over batter so I cook up pikelets for afternoon tea with jam or save them to take to work as snacks. They’re also great for lunchboxes with a little jam or honey.

Yummo!

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Pikelets with blackberry jam for afternoon tea.

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Leftovers make for yummy lunchboxes.

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With a dollop of blackberry jam between layers.

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