It’s getting to be that time of year when everyone is putting away their bikes and pulling out their skis. What better way to spend a weekend enjoying the fresh mountain air then hitting the slopes with friends and family?
Whether it’s 6 inches of new powder or a groomed run, skiing requires a lot of flexibility, balance, and physical fitness, which creates a massive appetite. After a day of skiing, it’s important to fuel your body with healthy food options to ensure that you have enough energy because who are we kidding, Idaho has some of the best snow out there!
Feeding your body healthy fuel while skiing can improve your performance as well as increase energy levels when you grow tired. Here are a few suggestions for healthy snack options that taste great and are easy to pack up on the ski slopes.
Trail mix is a popular snack item that contains an assortment of nuts and seeds. Choose a dry roasted or unsalted option because it reduces sodium and saturated fat. Although it varies by the type of nut, they contain many heart healthy components such as fiber, Omega 3 fatty acids, Vitamin E, protein, and unsaturated fats. Nuts are easily stored and are a great source of energy between runs.
Fresh fruit can be heavy and awkward to pack around on your back all day. Dried fruit is easy to store in your jacket pocket, and doesn’t spoil. Examples of dried fruit that are great to snack on a cold winter day are apples, mangoes, apricots, and pineapples. These fruits contain high amounts of carbohydrates, which is your body’s main source of fuel.
When choosing your favorite dried fruit, it’s important to look at the nutrition facts label because many times there are high amounts of sugars added to create a sweeter flavor. Investing in a dehydrator is beneficial because you can then control what you add to the fruit in the process of drying it.
Although it’s cold outside, and your drink of choice may be hot cocoa, it’s important to keep your body hydrated. When you are undergoing physical activity, especially in the cold weather, your heart is working hard to maintain your internal body temperature, and because of the high altitudes it’s working even harder. Fluid is lost through sweat as well as breathing, so it’s important to maintain fluid status by staying hydrated.
Energy bars vary in terms of nutrients and calorie content, but are convenient and can be stored easily. When reading ingredient labels, bars with whole grains, oats, and low levels of saturated fats are the best choices to increase your energy when you’re feeling tired.
This recipe is a great source of energy and is easy to pack for a healthy snack:
Low fat chewy fruit and oatmeal bars
- 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 8oz. container of low fat vanilla yogurt
- 2 egg whites (lightly beaten)
- 2 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp. skim milk
- 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 3 cups Quaker oats (uncooked)
- 1 cup dried cranberries
Combine all ingredients and bake at 350 degrees for 28-32 minutes.