It’s that time of year in triathlon season. The days are ending later, the temperature hotter and the duration of workouts is longer.  I can only take so much of the sweet stuff on a long ride-gels, sports nutrition solution drinks, bars and dates. When I get home, I’m craving something salty and crunchy.  The last thing that I want to do is pound down a protein shake (more sweet stuff) but like a good athlete, I do this first as Coach said so. Well, he recommended chocolate milk but I’ll take a Vega smoothie over chocolate milk any day……and don’t even get me started about the ingredients of Muscle Milk (a brand who has done a bang up job in making endurance athletes think “I need this product” while I’m thinking “why do I need artificial flavors and canola oil in a recovery drink?”) Yikes….you can read all about it but UGH and double UGH.

I have a few niggles-specifically in my achilles and calves and I’m doing everything possible to heal them. Me drinking a shake or smoothie after a long bike ride is not for pleasure but rather recovery protocol.   It’s kinda like a kid having to eat the broccoli before getting the dessert.   I guzzle the smoothie/recovery drink/shake and then I move on to what I really want.

Really ‘effin good “cheesy” popcorn..oooohhh the SALT! The CRUNCH!

My latest quick fix is cheesy popcorn.  I’m loving nutritional yeast right now.  Packed with B-12 vitamins and some protein, it is great sprinkled on sweet potatoes and salads or used as a thickener in creamy kale or vegan Caesar salad dressing (more on that later).  Remember that not all corn is evil-if something is labeled “organic”  then BY LAW it CANNOT  be a Gentically Modified Product (GMO);  To make this, I pop some organic popcorn, spray with coconut oil and toss with nutritional yeast and sea salt…..YUM.

Leah (pictured) and me (not pictured) waiting for real food at Lofty Coffee in Encinitas

I’m 3-plus weeks out from Eagleman 70.3.  I’m going to be racing with a minimum of dry land running in the bank. That scares me a little as most of my running has been in the pool (and I’ve got some great tan lines to prove it).  I have talked to a few athletes and have heard about “so and so had PR’ed after 3 months of pool running” so here’s hoping that I can run reasonably well.  Today I have no pain in the achilles tendon, but rather than to go out and “test” it, I’m going to continue to pool run.  I think that its the periodic testing that athletes do before an injury is fully healed that sets them back (I’ve actually proved that a few times).   You have to heal fully.   Especially with Achilles.

Happy Training and Racing to All

-LM