Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Carbs carbs carbs

I never thought I'd say (or write) this, but carbo-loading is difficult. Or at least doing it properly is.

It seems my perpetual fear of gaining weight while abroad--a fear that started when I was 15 and moved to France--has caused me to always seek out the low-carb option. As unhealthy ridiculous as this may sound, it has become my reality.

And so, when I began my carbo-loading this week--I have a marathon coming up--I didn't realize I would have to constantly remind myself to skimp on fats and protein and go for carbs, carbs, and more carbs. But not just any carbs. Proper carbo-loading requires some thought: easily digestible carbs, even if refined, over fiber-heavy ones; naturally sweetened or homemade snacks (fruit-based, etc.) over candy (which may actually come in handy during the race).

Anyways, to make it easier, I decided to bake goodies from my favorite running cookbook (Racing Weight Cookbook) so as to have carb-heavy snacks up for grabs. So far so good.

Apple-Craisin Bars (adapted from Racing Weight Cookbook)
Active time: 20 minutes; total time: 40 minutes.
Makes 8-12 bars. 
  • 3/4 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup egg whites (4 egg whites)
  • 1/4 cup water 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 large apple
  • 1/4 cup craisins
  • 1 1/2 quick oats
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3 servings vanilla whey protein powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons chia
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine yogurt, egg whites, water, and vanilla. Set aside; let rest at room temperature. 
  3. Chop apple into fine pieces. In a small bowl combine apple pieces and craisins. 
  4. In a separate large bowl combine oats, flour, protein powder, sugar, chia, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt; stir to mix well. 
  5. Add melted coconut oil to wet ingredients and mix well. Stir in apple pieces and craisins. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until uniformly moistened. 
  6. Spread batter into prepared pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes until center is just solid. Cool completely, about 20 minutes, before cutting into 8-12 bars.  

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