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Fitness Fudge *RAW*

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I’ve been overwhelmed and excited by the interest and sales in my debut eBook Travelling in the Raw which launched last week and this was largely the reason for my absence from blogging. Thank you to those of you that have already bought it, I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below.

So I’ve been absent and I promised you kombucha and raw vegan felafel. All I can say is, they are Ā coming šŸ˜‰

I find whenever I promise something on the blog, life throws me a curveball and other priorities crop up, and being a mummy to an almost walking 8 month old add to the spontaneity of my life.

In the meantime, I get plenty of requests and emails asking all sorts of questions, and the latest was did I have any pre workout breakfast ideas that are healthy?

Even though I am not a fitness professional, the timing of this question was impeccable as I had recently pulled out of the cobwebs, a book I first purchased for the hubs when he was flirting with the idea of competing in triathlons.

Thrive – The Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performance in Sports & Life, by Brendan Brazier. Brendan is a professional ironman triathlete and the guy behind VegaĀ – the raw wholefoods product line.

As I’ve recently returned to regular work outs again, post pregnancy, I have been paying extra attention to how I fuel my body both pre and post exercise, as my work out routines have been slowly increasing in intensity, as I vow to get my pre pregnancy glow back :)

 

Whilst I strive for a mainly raw diet, I do like to keep updated with new research or philosophies to ensure I can feel and look the best I can, now and in old age, but sometimes get confused with conflicting information that bombards our senses.

I was finding my endurance during runs and strength training to be waning, and started to question if I was fuelling myself correctly.

Body for Life tells you to work out on an empty stomach, other training techniques tell you to eat something before you train, so what was I supposed to do? If I worked out on an empty stomach, my workout session suffered, if I ate something light, what should I eat, and was I only then burning off what I had just eaten and not my stored fat I am trying to lose?

Brendan talks about pre exercise snacks in Chapter 4, and breaks exercise down into 3 levels: level one high intensity for shorter time, level two moderate intensity between one and three hours, and level three lower intensity lasting more than 3 hours.

Most of my activity whether it is strength training, running/jogging, walking, home workout DVD’s, is usually level one or two.

Brendan suggests the best fuel is a simple carbohydrate of which the healthiest is naturally, fruit. Dates (which hello hello, grow in abundance here in Saudi) are his favourite choice as they are rich in glucose and once this is consumed it does not have to be converted and is sent straight to the liver for instant energy.

Of course there is fructose which is also present in fruit, has a lower GI than glucose which means it takes longer to start to work once consumed but it burns for longer, giving prolonged energy. He says bananas, mangos and papayas, as well as being high alkalinity are also high in fructose providing both immediate and longer lasting energy – which is why my bananas pre work out snack are ideal!

He also notes that coconut oil is often overlooked as a quick energy source. As it contains medium chain triglycerides, these too, go straight to the liver for an instant power boost.

For level two activities, he suggests bumping up the nutrient ratio in the pre exercise snack to contain a small amount of protein and essential fatty acids. If placed in the right ratio, they will not only digest quickly but also provide sustained energy for a longer period of time, whether your exercise is vigorous or not.

Examples of vegan sources of protein could be hemp , pea protein, brown rice protein powders and essential fatty acids can be found in ingredients like ground flaxseeds or almonds.

So bearing all that in mind I came up with this recipe to munch on prior to my level one training – usually walking or running.

Fitness Fudge

adapted from Brendan Brazier’s Direct Fuel Bites

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I have made three versions of this, all delicious. See if you can come up with your own, and let me know how they taste!

ChocolateĀ 

1/2 cup of lightly packed dates

3 tablespoons of coconut oil

zest & juice of one lemon

2 tablespoons of cacao powder

1/4 teaspoon himalayan or celtic sea saltĀ (rocks are best as they give the fudge delicious salty crunch!)

Cinnamon Donut

1/2 cup of lightly packed dates

3 tablespoons of coconut oil

1/2 tablespoon of lemon juice

1 Ā 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon powder

1/4 teaspoon of himalaya or celtic sea saltĀ (rocks are best as they give the fudge delicious salty crunch!)

Mint Chip – one of my all time favourite recipe flavour combinations

1/2 cup of lightly packed dates

3 tablespoons of coconut oil

1/2 tablespoon of lemon juice

1 teaspoon of peppermint extract

2 T cacao nibs

1/4 teaspoon of himalaya or celtic sea saltĀ (rocks are best as they give the fudge delicious salty crunch!)

Method – same for each recipe above

Place all ingredients in food processor and process with the S blade until it rolls up into a sticky ball. You may need to knead the ball down and process a few more times to ensure all ingredients are thoroughly mixed and almost smooth. You still want a slight texture but want it to resemble fudge as much as possible.

The mix will be almost a caramel consistency and very sticky once fully combined.

 

Place the mix onto a piece of cling/plastic wrap Ā and gently shape into the thickness and size of a block of fudge.

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Wrap up and place in the freezer, where you will store it. It should take half an hour to firm up.

You can slice off bite size pieces direct from the freezer prior to your work out, but I’ll warn you, you might just want to eat them anytime of the day!

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16 comments on “Fitness Fudge *RAW*

  1. That 'fitness fudge' looks awesome! I, too, have been wondering what to eat before heading to the gym. I usually eat oatmeal early in the morning and then go to the gym an hour or two afterwards and that works, but if I'm working out right away, the bowl of oatmeal is too much, so this would be perfect. Thanks! Oh, and congratulations on the book release!!

    • Yeah I like oatmeal too as it sticks to your ribs but like you said, if you eat it too close to working out then yeah, no good. Thanks for the congrats lovely!

  2. "Fitness fudge" is a brilliant idea! I'm sitting here drinking coffee with coconut milk pre-workout but am now thinking "Damn…THAT's what I should be having." I love the different variations. Brendan is awesome…and so are you! :)

  3. Darling, you never lost your glow! You're always effervescent :)

    I am *so* excited by the cinnamon donut flavour particularly! I've had the same jar of coconut oil since Christmas last year and up until last month, had used perhaps two tablespoons. I've been using it in granola but wanted to try it using it in one of my date-nut raw vegan truffle recipes, but now you've given me the perfect recipe! Kinda love how I'll be using organic raw vegan expensive Loving Earth coconut oil with medjool dates… from Costco. šŸ˜›

    P.S. Haven't yet watched the videos as I'm on terribly slow internet at present, but will soon! xo

  4. This sounds incredible! I've been reading Breandan's Thrive Fitness book fo help with training for my half-marathon but haven't tried any of his energy bar recipes yet. I do love having a pre-workout snack though – my energy levels just aren't the same if I don't!

  5. I am loving this recipe, especially the cinnamon donut:-) For my busy life, I love how easy, and fun this is to make:-) Take care, Terra

  6. the cinnamon donut is soooo amazing! so simple too! wow o wowie wow wow! you definitely have my attention. teach me, yoda, your new and different ways!!!

  7. I just made the fitness fudge mint falvoured – but it really only made a very small amount – barely the size of a chocolate bar – is that right??? I have used all the ingredients.

  8. Looks yum!
    Is the cacao powder organic unsweetened ? Last time I used it for a coconut oil receipe it wasn't very nice so I had to add something to sweeten it. Maybe the dates are enough?

  9. I will give this a try, looks very easy. Thanks. I do something similar but with lots more in, so takes a wee bit longer! Try adding nuts, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, sometimes raisins soaked in orange juice, sometimes a spoonful of chlorella or spirulina, (never both, and go canny!). I blend all dry ingredients and then tip into a bowl to mix in the melted coconut oil. If for a treat, not for pre exercise, I would leave out the salt. Thanks, lots of ideas

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