Monday, June 4, 2012

Bikkie patrol!

On Route 66, the van always had an array of goodies for us. Apples and oranges and bananas, peanut butter and jelly, cookies, beef jerky. Soda and V-8 in the cooler. Gatorade. We could just belly up to the bar (and we did). All good riding food. And mostly sugar, sugar, sugar.

Very little of this was legal when I was growing up. My special favorites were the cookies my mother refused to buy. You know, those sandwich cookies with "creme" fillings, like Oreos. Mother's English Tea. Taffys. Believe it or not, Oreos are a great riding food! Most cycling events feature them at rest stops. They're salty and sweet and calorie-rich. Mmmmm.... But I digress.

At the end of a trip like that, one of the transitions you have to make is diet. Thea kept repeating a mantra to herself the last few days. Our last few meals together she would mutter under her breath, preparing for the transition. Something like, gonna have to ramp back on the calories when I get back home.

It's not just the volume of calories that has to change. When you ride a bike all day, up and down, dirt and pavement, the body burns whatever you shovel in. Waffle combo. Enchilada plate (with green chile). Milkshake! When you stop doing that, what you eat becomes more important too. Time to focus on the type of fuel.

Your brain knows the difference. A few weeks ago I ran into this article about Omega 3's versus sugar. Oreos vs., say, salmon. Both excellent for the taste buds! Only one is good for the brain, though. Guess which one.

What I'd really like to know is, after they stopped feeding the rats Oreos, did the rats ever stop craving them?

Full disclosure, this morning's breakfast was a donut. Someone in the house has a Massive Sweet Tooth. But in general, since the trip I've ramped way back on sugar, mostly by cutting out dessert. I notice I can taste it now, in supposedly not-so-sweet drinks.

This week's treat is two wild salmon steaks, waiting in the fridge :-)

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