This morning, I cycled 32 miles. Thirty. Two. My longest ride of the year thus far.
For some reason, the hills that I regularly ride felt harder. Maybe it was the chilly wind, making my muscles tighten up. Maybe it was the fatigue caused by my hypothyroidism. Maybe it was that I just hadn’t gotten enough sleep the night before. Or maybe it was just one of those days.
I don’t know what it was, but I do know what got me through the last five miles. The thought of a thick slice of this bread. Fruity, vanilla-scented bread.
It is the perfect way to refuel, too, filled with ingredients like whole wheat flour, ground flax seed, applesauce, pears and walnuts.
Vanilla-Scented Pear Bread
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/4 cup ground flax seed
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 cup low-fat milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 medium pear, diced
1 cup walnut halves
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a 5×9″ loaf pan.
Chop the walnuts until coarsely ground. (I did this in the chopper attachment of my immersion blender.)
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flours, flax seed, sugar, baking powder and baking soda. Fold in the applesauce.
Add the milk and vanilla, stirring until smooth and well-mixed. Fold in the pear and walnuts.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan, and bake for 40-45 minutes at 350F. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before sliding a knife around the edges and turning the loaf out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
How do you refuel after a hard workout?