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Eating Right to Surf Better

Eating Right to Surf Better

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Images and Words by Beth Franklin

Before I started focusing on what I put into my body, I ate anything that I craved (Especially pre and post surf). Normally that craving comes from low blood sugar rather than the actual need for food. So the food that I would go for would be something that gave me a short lived sugar high in which I would get a tonne of energy from but it wouldn’t last long and sometimes that meant running out of fuel during a surf!!! Meaning I wouldn’t be able to perform my best and improve my abilities in the water, this definitely sparked something in me to start really thinking about what my body needs so that I could get more time in the water and more waves! I’m nowhere near a professional nutritionist and definitely don’t want to be preaching at people to eat this way or make people feel bad for not, cause I still reach for the Malteasers and GUMMY BEARS but from my experience this has really worked for me and is something that will definitely stick with me on upcoming surf trips or activities.

Breakfast:
Power Smoothie
This is such a great breakfast to set me up for a morning of work, workouts and surfing! Full of all the good carbs, protein, plus tonnes of vitamins and minerals, ALL in one smoothie to power you through all the waves you want!

Here’s what you’ll need:
       1tbsp Chia Seeds
       1 Small Celery Stalk
       Handful Spinach
       Handful of Kale
       ½ cup of apple Juice
       1 Banana
       ½ lemon juice
       1 tsp Wheatgrass (Optional but has over 82 nutrients so worth it!)

Like I said this smoothie is a great hearty breakfast full of goodness so that your body has the best it needs to get you pumped before your surf. I find myself reaching for this a lot of the time, especially when I first started out as it’s so quick and simple to make but gives you a great energy boost to get you going first thing. From, the banana which is fantastically full of GOOD carbs (YES IT’S A THING) that will help any athlete perform to the best of their abilities and increases your physical endurance levels. Chia seeds are possibly one of the best things to add to any meal, I find it best to add them to my diet first thing as it sets my body up for the day. I admit I was sceptical but thought I’d try them and was pleasantly surprised, they make my breakfasts more filling and don’t have any taste so I don’t lose out on the yummy flavours in my green smoothie. On top of this they’re full of protein, high in Omega 3, and is a third of the recommended fibre intake for an adult. Along with basically being a super power seed it helps improve blood pressure and improves a person’s mood!

Any breakfast smoothie always tastes better with the sun shining through your window: 

Pre Surf Snack:
Hummus and Crackers
It normally takes about and hour and a half of driving for me to get to my nearest spot so by the time I get there it’s snack time, I want to make sure that I can spend as much time in the water and my energy levels are at the top of their game before I start getting a beating and paddling. Hummus is a great snack to have throughout any type of day; It’s full of protein so having this before a surf can be greatly beneficial to the muscles you’re about to work and the slow releasing carbs will stop you from crashing and give you that extra bit of energy to do that last paddle into a wave! Hummus is great also because it can be edited to anyone’s taste. For example, this Tomato and Basil recipe I’ve made! 

Here’s what you’ll need:
– 2 Rude Health Brown Rice Crackers (I find this is the best brand for things like these, as they aren’t as processed as others and have honest natural ingredients)
– 400g Chickpeas (you can find them for pennies in most supermarkets: best to get them in water)
– A Jar of Sun Dried Tomatos (urgh so tasty, I need some now)
– 7 Table spoons of Olive Oil
– Water (add as much as you like, to thin out mix)
– Basil Leaves
– 1 Lemon
– a big ol’ tablespoon of Tahini (essential for all hummus recipes everywhere)
– 1/2 Garlic Cloves
– Salt and Pepper (I use far too much pepper because, it’s the best)

One tip: Unless you want soggy Brown Rice Crackers take the hummus in a separate tub, it’s worth the extra hassle…trust me you don’t need that in your life.

Post Surf:
Rude health Brown Rice Cracker sandwich filled with Almond butter, Pumpkin Seeds and the other half of the banana you used earlier or just a whole one if you fancy it!
*With this snack I alternate between Pumpkin Rye bread or the Crackers just so happened that on this surf trip I had a thing with these Rude Health crackers.

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This is a more filling snack to refuel your body after your session, also has protein and good carbs to keep you going and help avoid the sugar drop that your body will go through after enduring a long session! The Banana not only is a great carbohydrate, It also has lots of potassium, which is essential for muscle functions; Manganese is also a key nutrient found in bananas which allows your body to access as much energy from food as possible. To sum up Bananas are great for getting rid of those spaghetti arms as soon as possible. The Almond butter is also a great source of energy, full of protein and carbs to get your body back on track and it evens out those energy levels so you don’t crash! I personally need all the energy you can get after taking those wetsuit boots off…

Dinner:
My Quinoa and Tomato Veggie bowl!
After about an hour and a bit of driving back, half asleep and half buzzed off the session, we usually get back around dinnertime maybe a bit earlier, but that doesn’t matter! I need some food; something filling that will refuel my spaghetti arms and give my body the energy it needs to repair itself after a long day of intense activities. This is a dish I cook in bulk to last for a couple of days worth of lunches and maybe another dinner as it’s so quick, easy, cost friendly and so tasty!

Here’s what you’ll need:
       ½ Cup Quinoa
       ½ Cup Bulgar Wheat (I use this to bulk up the quinoa rather than using a whole cup)
       400g can of organic chopped tomatos
       400g can of Kidney beans in water
       1 pepper
       ½ an onion
       Mushrooms (I used 4 or 5 but it’s whatever you prefer)
       1 and a bit handfuls of Spinach
       1 Courgette
       1 tsp of Chilli
       1 tsp of Paprika

This comforting bowl of goodness is full of protein, iron, fibre, plus tonnes of vitamins and minerals from all the veggies. Making it the perfect recovery bowl so you’re ready and raring to go for that surf in the morning, making sure you make the most of every summer session you can!

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Sweet Treat:
Cacao Slice and Camomile Tea
I’m sure I’m not the only one who gets a serious sweet tooth after a surf…or just dinner, every night…Anyway, instead of going for tea and some chocolate Malted Milks, I have a slice of my Cacao Treats and Camomile, Vanilla and Honey tea which is the perfect post dinner combination.  The treats are full of antioxidants, fibre, protein and vitamin C, which will compliment your bodies over night recovery perfectly along with satisfying that sweet tooth.  PS I’d probably pack a couple of these for after your surf, sometimes hummus just isn’t enough! Here is a link to the recipe: Beth’s Blog

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So there you have it! An outline of what I would normally eat in a day when I go surfing, I hope you guys enjoyed it and let me know what your favourite pre/post surf snacks and meals are!

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