Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Miami Man: A Windy Race and a Speedy Recovery
So, I am a big believer in vegetables. Yes, everyone who knows me knows that. But here is what I ate and why.
Post race: Not a speck of processed carb (no flour). It is important to start in with replenishing foods, not empty calories. Skip the pizza.
So I had just water for a while.
Then, when I got hungry, I had some kale chips (they have nut and sunflower in the coating so some fat and protein), an Artisana Blue Algae nut butter packet, a Raw Revolutions spirulina dream bar (again, mostly nuts, too sweet but when you need packaged food for after, not a bad choice, date sweetened). When it got to be dinner time, here is what I ordered: A green salad with no cheese in a light vinaigrette and a vegan vegetable platter with no grains at all, no bread. Here is what I actually got: a green salad, perfect. And a huge plate of risotto...what??? So, I did not eat it, I picked out the vegetables, trumpet mushrooms, asparagus, string beans and broccoli and ate every speck avoiding the white rice...I had expected a big lump of steamed greens, asparagus, mushrooms, string beans and carrots...oh well. I hoped for some spice or flavor...hmm. Anyway, I topped it off with some peanut butter and called it a day.
But, here is that happy ending, I finally took two kids to Whole Foods, (my office or home away from home as I fondly think of it), made them sit and eat dinner there from the salad bar while I picked up a container of cooked Brussels sprouts and some raw mixed greens and bean sprouts. When my day was almost over and the kids had had dinner, I finally made a huge steamed vegetable platter and woke up not sore at all. I did, of course, force myself to rest (I walked on a treadmill for ten minutes and rode a stationary bike for ten minutes, how is that for rest Gregg Cook?), tried to take a sauna but the coed sauna at the gym leaves me a target for conversation with fat balding men so I cut it short. And, my point is I feel like nothing happened. Am hearing some of the others are still sore and even took Advil...yikes!
Why do these foods help? It is well established that foods high in antioxidants, particularly phytonutrients help with recovery. Also, protein plays a key role but seems to be best when it is from nuts, seeds and other absorbable plant proteins such as beans and lentils. Many people are also pro fish which is a valuable source with heart healthy omega 3 fatty acids but not better than vegan sources. Muscle repair requires extra nutrition and while there is lots of research on macronutrients and what mix of carbs and protein and fat will get the best results, the micronutrients can not be overlooked. To repair damaged muscle tissues the seaweed category, the alliaceous category (onions and garlic and leeks), and leafy greens seem to help the most. Berries, mushrooms and orange vegetables (beta carotene) are helpful as well. And I can not emphasize a good quality Japanese (light roasted) very green tea enough!!!
p.s. If all else fails, try 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric in a tablespoon of high quality olive oil before you even think about Advil!