Enjoy Summer's Freshest Produce
These four recovery-enhancing fruits and vegetables are in season – here’s how to incorporate them tonight
No, not that the season of pumpkin spice lattes, cozy infinity scarves and tall boots is just around the corner—it means that some of the best fruits and veggies for endurance athletes are coming into season, and you should start reaping their recovery- and performance-enhancing benefits by incorporating them into your daily meals with these recipe ideas.
Here are four of the best seasonal fruits and vegetables for endurance athletes and how you can incorporate them into your dinner (or dessert!) tonight.
You know fall is just around the corner when you start to notice fresh, local apples showing up in the produce section at the grocery store or farmers market; or, in my case, all over the ground when I’m out for a run along rural roads in my neighbourhood. Aside from tasting delicious, apples pack quite a bit of soluble fibre (4 grams per medium apple) into a relatively low-calorie snack, making it the perfect sweet and filling snack if you’re watching your waistline. Apples are also a good source of immune-boosting vitamin C, and contain heart-healthy antioxidant compounds, which help prevent LDL cholesterol from oxidizing and also help inhibit inflammation. Apples are also high in an antioxidant called quercetin, which can aid in endurance performance by making oxygen more available to the lungs.
- Healthy Apple Pie in an Apple
- Apple Oatmeal Pancakes
- Serrano (ham), Manchego (cheese), and Apple Sandwich
- Apple + Cinnimon Breakfast Cookie
- Roast Pork Loin with Apples
Aside from being low in calories, high in vitamin C, and high in potassium (an important electrolyte for endurance athletes, as it helps to reduce blood pressure and heart rate), zucchinis are an incredibly versatile vegetable. This late-summer squash can be thrown into smoothies or baked goods for a vitamin and mineral boost, eaten raw as a refreshing snack, grilled on the barbeque on a skewer or spiralized into zucchini noodles as a low-calorie substitution for pasta.
- Zucchini Noodles with Creamy Avocado Pesto
- Healthy Double Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
- Blueberry Zucchini Smoothie
- Zucchini and Summer Squash Kebabs
- Baked Zucchini Fries
This sweet and delicious summer fruit is the perfect post-run or ride snack—not only are peaches high in vitamin C, A and potassium, but also contain glycogen-replenishing carbohydrates and sugars. Peaches taste amazing on their own (obviously), but are also great in smoothies, on salads and cereal, and—this is my personal favourite—in cobblers, crumbles and pies.
- Easy Healthy Peach Crisp
- Cinnamon Peach Oat Crumble
- Peach Salad with Tomatoes, Feta and Basil Vinaigrette
- Grilled Chicken with Peach BBQ Sauce
- Vegan Peach Oat Smoothie
What patio barbeque dinner is complete without grilled corn on the cob? This late-summer vegetable (which is also a grain) is high in several essential nutrients for endurance athletes, including potassium and phosphorus, which has been linked to improving aerobic performance. Corn is also high in carbohydrates, making it the perfect addition to your night-before-a-long-training-run-or-ride meal.