It’s more than wishful thinking; chocolate can be good for you!
Dark chocolate and cocoa is packed with anti-oxidants which protect our cells from damaging free radicals, help fight off disease and basically keep us healthy. Cocoa and dark chocolate also contains high levels of important minerals such as copper, iron, potassium and magnesium. Anyone stepping up their activity for summer races will find that they feel better if they keep up their mineral levels which can become depleted though sweat and heavy exercise…what better excuse can you have to eat more good quality chocolate.
I have been putting together a collection of breakfast recipes for my new book for child and teen athletes – Go Faster Food for Kids – and I’m searching for ways to break away from the processed cereal culture. This is a hard task when we’re bombarded by advertising and such tantalisingly attractive packaging on the shelves. I have a big problem with the majority of processed cereals; marketed as healthy but essentially stripped of natural goodness which is then artificially restored, with ‘added’ nutrients. It’s really difficult to sell your child (even my children who can really appreciate good, wholesome food) a wholegrain and natural alternative like porridge when there is a pack of shredded or puffed, sugary wheat-based cardboard in the cupboard!
Hence my idea of chocolate granola! If you ask me, this chocolate granola gives you the best of both worlds; sweet, crunchy and very delicious, packed with a good balance of low GI, sustaining and natural carbohydrate, fibre, omega-3 fatty acids, protein and essential minerals…and it even makes the milk go brown and chocolatey like it does with Cocopops.
Here’s a quick version of how to make it, the full version will be in the book:
- Heat the oven to 180 C.
Oat and Raisin Muffins
The boys fell on these when they came back from touch rugby tonight!
- Victoria (makes a lovely sponge!)
Every now and then I get a craving to keep hens in the back garden but I’ve always chickened out (excuse the pun, I will now try to refrain from any further egg puns although so eggstremely tempting). Lucky for me, my lovely friend Jane Evans of Birdcombe Court Farm keeps me supplied with delicious freshly-laid beauties.
So as athletes, why should we eat eggs? Well,
Happy New Year and best wishes for an awesomely fit 2012.
What is all this fuss about
Butter Butter Soup; this tasty and wholesome combination of butternut squash, butterbeans and ginger makes a very comforting, sustaining and healthy training lunch. I have to admit that, as is the case with many good culinary discoveries, this soup combination evolved as a result of a mistake. I had put too much stock in my butternut squash soup and luckily struck upon the idea of using a tin of butterbeans to make it less runny.
When you’re training hard it’s important to be vigilant about keeping up your intake of vitamins and minerals as levels can become depleted with intensive workout, just as you need to ensure your glycogen levels are topped up by eating plenty of carbohydrate. The ingredients in this soup all work hard together to provide
I just picked up my two boys, plus French exchange boy, Max, from Elektrik 3, Olly Barkley’s new rubgy academy. They had a truly awesome day!
Olly Barkley, England star and centre and fly-half for Bath, with the help of some of the biggest names in rugby, has launched an amazing rugby academy for children at Colston’s School in Bristol. Four really good training sessions with proper rugby stars – in my boys case, Matt Banahan and Luke Narraway – interim sessions such as nutrition “What do rugby players eat”, how to prepare for and recover after games and what it’s like to be a
If you’re doing lots of training at the moment, it’s really important to keep up your intake of vitamins and minerals as well as carbohydrate and protein. This cake is a good excuse to do just that… Upside-down cake or virtuous tarte tatin, this perfect autumn post-run treat is fool-proof, incredibly easy to make and highly nutritious. It is also really impressive served warm, as a dessert, accompanied by a dollop of cr
Whilst playing around with butternut squash recipes I fell upon the idea of grating it up and making a cake, just like you might do with carrot or courgette. It works! In fact, it works really, really well and what’s even more surprising, my daughter, who will normally extract any trace of butternut squash from her meal, absolutely adores it!
I think butternut squash is a fabulous vegetable and an excellent addition to any training diet. Bell-like in shape, it has a beautifully smooth, creamy-coloured skin which protects its dense, rich golden-yellow flesh. Its texture is deliciously soft; its taste sweet, buttery, nutty. It
I’m struggling to keep my eyes open after completing our 48 hour non-stop 200 mile relay Rampant Run from Paignton Zoo to Twickenham… and still reeling from the fact that I’ve met and run with so many totally amazing people over those two days.. I don’t want to name drop too much, but I’ve just got to, sorry…
Prince Harry (wow ), rugby legends Martin Johnson, Phil Vickery, Phil de Glanville, the inspirational Amazon explorer, Ed Stafford, globally renowned magician Chris Korn from the BBC magicians programme, ex Commando Royal Marines double amputee Vince Manley and triple amputee Mark Omrod to name but a few….
And of course, 16 normal (???) runners, all with a common goal – to raise money, to see the rugby and to have a good time! The Rampant Run was an amazing feat of teamwork of all ages (my teenage son James included) and running experience. The brainchild of inspirational distance runner, Charlotte Thompson, Kay Johnson, wife of England Manager, Martin Johnson, and Monique Coulton, the Rampant Run is set to raise