Tips & recipes for your post-ride refuel
On July 23rd 2017, the Rapha Women’s 100 takes place, a global event that will see women across the world unite to cycle 100km in celebration of the cycling community. You can sign up for the event on the official page — but what happens when the race is over?
Refuelling post-ride is incredibly important as after working out, muscles are damaged and energy stores are depleted. You can kick-start the recovery process by eating the right food post-ride, replenishing the nutrients your muscles need for optimum recovery. You should start this within the first half an hour after finishing a race by consuming a snack of 15-25g of high-quality protein and 1-1.2g of carbohydrates per kg of body mass.
This snack is just the start of your refuelling. You should eat a meal with the right balance of carbs, proteins, fats, minerals, vitamins and water within the first hour of finishing a race. Naturally, for maximum benefits, you’ll need high-quality, non-processed foods that are packed full of nutrients.
So what kind of meals should you be eating after your ride? Here, professional cyclist Tiffany Cromwell of CANYON//SRAM shares two of her favourite refuelling recipes:
STUFFED SWEET POTATO WITH QUINOA BLEND AND DAL
4 medium sized sweet potatoes
- 3 tbsp coconut oil
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 4 dried apricots, roughly chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
- 1 tbsp organic turmeric (use fresh turmeric, grated if possible)
- 2 tsp organic cardamom
- 1/2 tsp organic chili flakes
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 1 2/3 cups red lentils
- 4 cups (900 ml) water
- 1 tsp sea salt flakes
- 2 fresh tomatoes, cut in boats
- 70g spinach or baby spinach
- 1 cup quinoa (cooked as per packet instructions)
- seeds of 1 pomegranate
- ½ cup dates, deseeded and chopped into small pieces
- 1 large zucchini, grated
- ½ cup fresh coriander leaves
- ½ cup fresh mint, shredded
- zest of 1 lemon
- handful of sunflower seeds
- handful of pumpkin seeds
- 1/2 cup / 125 ml natural yoghurt or crumbed feta
- fresh coriander
- Preheat the oven to 200C/ 390F/ gas mark 6
- Give each sweet potato a small slit at the top and place them on a baking pan. Bake for about 45-60 minutes or until the skin is crisp and the flesh is soft. (Prepare the dal and quinoa while the potatoes are in the oven.)
- Place a large pot on a medium heat. Add the coconut oil, onion, garlic, apricots, ginger, turmeric, cardamom and chilli flakes. Sauté for a few minutes, until the onion is soft and the kitchen has a lovely scent from all the spices. You can add a splash of water if they start to get burnt.
- Add carrots and lentils and let cook for two more minutes, then add water and salt and give it a good stir. Decrease the heat when it starts to boil, put the lid on and let simmer for 15-25 minutes (depending on the lentils). Stir occasionally to make sure the lentils aren’t getting burnt. Add more water if needed.
- Remove from the heat when the lentils almost have dissolved, add tomatoes and spinach. Taste and add more salt or spices if needed.
- Cook quinoa as per instructions on the packet. Once cooked, remove from heat and add the pomegranate seeds, dates, zucchini, coriander, mint, lemon zest, sunflower and pumpkin seeds and mix well.
- Place each sweet potato on a plate. Make a cut at the top and take out some of the flesh whilst fluffing the remainder with a fork to give space for the fillings. Add a spoonful or two of the quinoa mix and the lentil stew into the potato (it doesn’t matter if it overflows out of the sweet potato and onto the plate.)
- Top with natural greek yoghurt or crumbed feta cheese and some fresh coriander leaves and ground black pepper. Enjoy!
CHICKEN AND MUSHROOM SWEET MISO UDON NOODLES
- 1 packet (250g) udon noodles
- 2 chicken breast fillets, chopped into bitesize pieces
- 2 clove garlic, minced
- 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- 1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
- 1 cup (235ml) water or broth from udon noodles (as needed)
- 1 cup mushrooms of your choice, chopped (I like to use shiitake mushrooms but you can use a mix of various Japanese mushrooms or also keep it simple with brown mushrooms)
- handful of lightly toasted cashews, roughly chopped.
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds, lightly toasted
- 3-4 spring onions, chopped (use whites and greens and have them separated)
- 1 tsp coconut oil or olive oil
- salt, to taste
Sweet miso sauce
- 4 tbsp white miso paste
- 4 tbsp maple syrup
- 4 tbsp mirin
- Prep all of your ingredients and chop what needs to be chopped.
- Cook udon noodles according to package directions in a pot of boiling water.
- In a small saucepan, combine miso paste, maple syrup and mirin. Bring to a gentle boil, turn heat down and simmer for 2-3 minutes, whisking continuously. The mixture should bubble slightly, but don’t let it burn. Set aside.
- In a medium pot or saucepan, heat coconut or olive oil on a medium heat. Add garlic, ginger, chilli, whites of the spring onions, chicken and sauté for a few minutes.
- Then add in mushrooms and a pinch of salt, and sauté until mushrooms are cooked down and the chicken is cooked through.
- Add cooked noodles (if you can time this well, add them right from the boiling water so the excess water helps to create the sauce).
- Add the sweet miso mixture, 2 tablespoons at a time, and taste as you go. You might not use all of it depending on how light or sweet/rich you prefer your meal.
- If necessary, add water or broth from noodles to thin the sauce to your desired consistency (I like to keep my sauce on the thicker side).
- Turn heat off and stir in half the spring onion greens, toasted cashews, and sesame seeds. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more sauce if necessary.
- Serve into bowls and top with the remaining scallion greens, and sesame seeds.
See also: 2017 cycling schedule