Soup: the per­fect run­ner’s fuel

Re­cover fast and watch your weight with the per­fect run­ner’s fuel: soup

Runner's World (UK) - - The Fit Food Handbook -

WHEN made with the right ingredients, soup pro­vides car­bo­hy­drate, pro­tein and an­tiox­i­dants, sup­port­ing your mus­cles like no other meal. Many run­ners think they need hours to cook a de­cent soup, but you can make a de­li­cious meal in 30 min­utes with what­ever is in your kitchen. Cre­ate your own by fol­low­ing these five easy steps. 1 / COOK THE ARO­MAT­ICS These veg­eta­bles, herbs and spices will add flavour to your soup. In a large saucepan, heat two ta­ble­spoons of olive oil. Add 250g of diced veg (see be­low) and two ta­ble­spoons of dried herbs and spices; fry for five min­utes.

TRY Onion, gar­lic, cel­ery, car­rots; dried sage, thyme, oregano, bay leaves, rose­mary, cumin, cin­na­mon, chilli pow­der.

LIQ­UID AS­SETS They add anti-in­flam­ma­tory com­pounds that fight sore­ness.

TIP Add fresh herbs at the end of cook­ing to pre­vent loss of flavour. 2 / POUR IN LIQ­UID The liq­uid con­tent will help keep you hy­drated in the win­ter and it will re­lieve con­ges­tion, too. Add one to two litres of warmed liq­uid (heat­ing it speeds up cook­ing). Use one type of liq­uid or a mix if you want to cre­ate more com­plex flavours in your soup.

TRY Veg­etable, chicken, beef or fish stock; tomato puree and juice; beer or wine (up to a quar­ter of to­tal liq­uid) 3 / ADD VEG­ETA­BLES Veg­gies pack an­tiox­i­dant vi­ta­mins and run­ner-friendly min­er­als. Aim for 750g to 1kg, cut into bite-sized pieces. Cook for five to 15 min­utes (soft or pre-cooked veg needs less time; raw, hard veg­eta­bles need more).

TRY Kale, car­rots, pep­pers, bak choi, cab­bage, toma­toes, mush­rooms, squash, broc­coli, sweet pota­toes.

TIP Add the greens dur­ing the last five min­utes; this will pre­vent over­cook­ing. 4 / IN­CLUDE PRO­TEIN Lean pro­tein re­pairs mus­cles and pro­vides iron. Use 400g of cooked meat or fish and one or two tins of beans for a vegetarian pro­tein source. If you use dry len­tils, add more liq­uid and cook for an ex­tra 20 min­utes.

TRY Beans (all kinds); cooked chicken, beef, fish, prawns; tofu, edamame; len­tils 5 / TOSS IN CARBS Carbs re­stock en­ergy stores. Add 450g of pre-cooked carbs and heat through for five min­utes (add ex­tra liq­uid and cook­ing time if us­ing un­cooked carbs).

TRY Cooked whole­grains (brown, black or wild rice, quinoa and bar­ley); whole­wheat pasta; pota­toes

TIP Small pas­tas such as mac­a­roni work best in soup.

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