Run or Workout? Apples Core to Training Diet + Recipes

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Why Apples are Core to a Runner's Diet - find out the health benefits and how they can improve your training.There’s truth to the saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”  This popular fruit has a bushel of benefits to keep the general population and athletes healthy and well. For example, apples are low in calories yet high in fiber, certain vitamins (like C), antioxidants and phytonutrients, making them a filling and snack that helps maintain weight and optimize health.

Avoid Apple Overload -- so just what IS considered a healthy serving of apple?

But, like everything else, you can over indulge. The suggested serving for an apple is about 1/3 pound, about 3″ in diameter (think of a tennis ball). However, most apples you see today at the market are not just large, the are super JUMBO! So, whether you run, swim, CrossFit or play team sports like basketball or lacrosse, there are even more reasons to add a healthy serving of apples to your training diet. Here are a few:

Healthy Carbs: Apples contain fructose, a natural fruit sugar that buts gas in the tank for your workouts. A medium apple has about 20 grams of carbohydrates.

Recovery: The healthy carbs in apples are also important for post-workout recovery, namely to replenish glycogen and fluids stores and help synthesis protein so that the body can repair taxed muscles. That’s why I always pair my apple with a Core Power High Protein Shake!

Hydration: Apples are about 84 percent water and another way to replace potassium and other electrolytes lost through sweat during exercise.

Gut Health: Pectin is found in apples, a prebiotic that promotes friendly gut bacteria. A healthy gut helps to “move things along” so that you won’t feel bloated and weighted down for your workout.

Endurance Booster:  Some studies suggest that quercetin, a flavonoid found in apples (especially the peel), may improve athletic endurance by affecting the oxidation process to muscles and increasing V02 Max.

Perfectly Portable: An apple comes packaged in its own wrapping will stay fresh for days (if not weeks) without any special treatment, making one an ideal snack to keep stowed in your purse or gym bag.

Versatile:  In addition to crunching an apple out of hand, there are plenty of easy and healthy ways to incorporate more apples into your diet including Apple “Nachos,” applesauce and baked apples.  It’s also easy to chop up apples and add them to protein pancake batter, stir frys and salads.

SOME OF MY FAVORITE APPLE RECIPES:

Cinnamon Super Oatmeal Stuffed ApplesBaked Cinnamon “Super Oats” Apples my just be the most comforting, homey breakfast ever made with a big apple and whole grain oats “superfied” with additional seeds and nuts.

caramel granola apple dessertCaramel Crunch Apple Nachos are are unique and healthy treat for parties, celebrations, fiestas and just plain ole everyday healthy snacking!

Apple Ring Protein PancakesApple Ring Protein Pancakes are a muscle-making spin off on my Grandma’s famous fritter recipe. Healthy carbs from the apples paired with a bit of protein powder are ideal for refueling after a hard run or workout.

Healthy raspberry apple snackRaspberry Chocolate Apple Rings simply require spreading a chocolate nut-butter over sliced apple and topping with raspberries.

So, are YOU an apple fan? Do you eat an apple a day . . . or an apple a week? What is your favorite way to eat an apple? Please share in the comments below – XOXO, Jennifer 

 

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