You take time to prepare yourself physically for events, why not take time to prepare your whole body from the inside??
This past weekend was the first stop of 3 The Rahlves’ Banzai Tour, an extreme ski/snowboard downhill race. If you haven’t heard of this event, it is GNARLY, to say the least. The conditions were exceptionally insane this past weekend, which is part of what makes this race so awesome! Saturday was a beautiful, warm bluebird day. Saturday night, temperatures dropped and the wind decided to show up, hard core. The result, a firm, ice packed race course. Scary shit! You can check out more about the race here: http://www.rahlvesbanzai.com/
Beyond the gnarly terrain, this event takes a lot of strength and endurance. I have been prepping my mind and body all year for this. I know first hand how eating right before events can help your next day performance as I felt the benefits when I completed my first triathlon this past summer. I prepared a similar meal as I did for my triathlon, making it mainly carbohydrates, with protein and vegetables. A mixture of foods I consume regularly, just at a different ratio to give me enough fuel and nutrients needed to optimize performance the next day. There is no exact equation for this that has been studied, I am my own guinea pig and am working on figuring a great one out.
I came up with this amazing recipe for rocket fuel. Carbohydrates before an intense day of activity is important, but you also need to get protein in. Not being a meat eater, it’s sometimes a challenge to find the right protein for pre-event fueling. Quinoa is a perfect plant-based protein for vegetarians, and everyone alike. It is a complete protein, meaning it contains all amino acids (building blocks) needed to make protein and create energy.
So! I kind of just made this recipe up off the top of my head hoping that would turn out! And, that it did. I shared my meal with my good guy friends, who all enjoyed it as well. Even my most pickier friend liked it!
Well…..did the food help me for the race?? YES! I felt amazing Saturday for time trials. I qualified 5th for Sunday’s 4x4s, and did not tire at the end of the race one bit. No cramping, no muscle exhaustion, all good. Made it to the final round of 4x4s….and magically I made the podium! Pretty damn excited.
So, what is in this magical Rainbow Rocket Fuel you ask? Here is the recipe! It takes about an hour total to make this meal. It makes ton of food! Enough for me to feed 4 that night, and have leftovers for the next day 🙂
Slight warning. If you are not used to these kinds of ingredients, you may not want to eat something like this for the very first time before an event. Your stomach could be confused. If you have a sensitive stomach, I recommend you try it at the beginning of the week, see how you feel, and then do it again the night before your event. My coach is not a huge kale, quinoa eater, he had this the night before the event, and felt amazing as well. So! This warning should not discourage 😉
Rainbow Rocket Fuel
- 1 C Dry quinoa (cooked according to package)
- Butternut squash (cubed)
- Olive oil spray
- Coarse pepper (to taste)
- Sea salt (to taste)
- White onion – diced
- Red onion diced
- 3 C Purple kale – about one head (chopped)
- 3 C Spinach (chopped)
- 3-4 Garlic cloves (pressed)
- 1/2 C Dried cranberries
- 1 Lemon
- 2 C Cilantro (chopped)
- 1 C Green onions (chopped)
- Srirache sauce (to taste)
- Pre-heat oven to 425*F
- Cook quinoa according to packaging
- Spray a baking sheet with olive oil spray
- Place cubed butternut squash on sheet, and spray again with olive oil
- Sprinkle butternut squash with salt and pepper, toss to coat.
- Place squash in preheated oven. Cook in oven for about 15 minutes, until fork tender.
- Spray a large skillet with olive oil.
- Add red and white onions to skillet and saute on high for about 1-2 minutes.
- Add to the skillet: cranberries, 1/2 squeezed lemon, cilantro and green onion. Mix well and reduce heat to medium.
- Add cooked quinoa to large skillet and stir softly.
- When butternut squash is fork tender, add it to the large skillet, stir and let cook for about 2 minutes.
- Place kale and spinach in a large bowl. Toss with the other 1/2 of the squeezed lemon.
- Add hot quinoa mixture to kale and spinach and mix, allowing the warmth to wilt the kale and spinach.
- Serve with cilantro and Srirache sauce.
- Go fly tomorrow!!