Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Snow snacking

Last week, whilst Miss Haribo was blogging for me, I was in Tignes falling over in the snow (I'm a fairly novice snowboarder) with a group of friends. I obviously have particular dietary requirements and our chalet host did a great job of providing tasty gluten and dairy free food for me. However my eating habits aren't typical for the group I was in, and it was interesting to observe the different approaches to eating on the slopes.

My ideal days snowboarding involves getting up not too early, having a decent low-fat breakfast and then snowboarding from mid morning through to the late afternoon without a long lunch break, this means a packed lunch and snacks pretty much eaten on the lifts and then a big afternoon snack when I get home. However most of my friends had other ideas preferring to stop for a substantial lunch of beer and pizza with regular stops for vin chaud between runs!!

Taking a long lunch means your leg muscles go cold, and eating a large meal diverts blood flow from your leg muscles to your digestive system - so not conducive for a good afternoons skiing. This is why I prefer regular small snacks that keep my energy levels up without sending me to sleep, and it also maximizes my time on the slopes.

I took gluten free bread with me, although it is now readily available in most French supermarkets, which I used to make smoked salmon sandwiches for my lunch. I also carried with me a good supply of snacks - mini packs of nuts or dried fruit and nut mixes, plus Nak'd bars and some Pulsin protein bars - and snacked on these whenever I felt hungry. If you don't have to eat gluten and diary free then Fruitus bars, Trek bars and Bounce balls are all great snacks to have with you on the slopes. It's also good to have something sugary with you for emergencies - if you suddenly have a blood sugar low skiing will become alot harder and a sugary snack can provide you with the necessary boost to let you ski home safely. I have Okri coconut bars for this purpose, but regular sweets will do the job perfectly.

Along with preferring longer lunches, alot of my friends also seemed to think their skiing improved after having an alcoholic drink! I think this has alot to do with the fear factor Miss Haribo talking about in her blog on Parkour - and everyone skis better when they're relaxed - although towards the end of the week one member of the group was even having a gin and Orangina for breakfast which I think is starting a bit early!

Along with keeping my energy levels topped up with regular snacks I kept my legs fresh each day with my favourite post-exercise recovery shake of cherry active for antioxidant repair, Nutri Ultra Muscleze
for Magnesium (muscle relaxant) and B vitamins (energy boost) with Lamberts Glutamine powder for muscle fuel and cell rebuilding combined with a scoop of protein powder - it worked like a treat and my muscles felt good enough for the gym on Monday having arrived home on Sunday.

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