Week 17/2016 in Review: Recovery Week and Matcha Addiction

Training

To be honest, this past week wasn’t particularly “exciting” since it was recovery week, so this post will be fairly short. I was thinking of not writing one at all, but then decided against it for continuity’s sake. My goal is to keep a sort of diary about my preparations for Bled 2017 after all. Sometimes, we still have a workout plan for recovery weeks, but since Tina was so busy preparing for the re-opening of her physiotherapy practice after a fire earlier this year, Max told us to just do whatever we wanted. Since I have a hard time not doing sports — I think I might have a slight addiction — I spent most of the week on my bike. Most days, I did a relaxing 60-minute steady state workout, with the exception of the weekend, which I will go more into detail later. Once, I went for a run because after so many hours in the saddle, I could not sit on my bike any more. 

Herbert’s groomsman Alex, who lives where Herbert is from in Lower Austria, was visiting for the weekend, so the three of us went on a 40km bike ride along the Danube on Saturday, which we all thoroughly enjoyed. Sadly, it was a little cold, but it just meant we had to cycle faster. Overall, I was really satisfied with my performance because I was able to go significantly faster than I was at the end of last year, effectively the last time I went outside for a bike ride. I couldn’t wait to get home though because I was really, really hungry. I think I am always hungry these days. 

On Sunday, we had our weekly workout in the quad. Unfortunately, I was still a little bit exhausted from the previous day’s long bike ride (and the many hours spent in front of Alex’s Wii U… shhh, don’t tell anyone… haha), but I managed to survive 15km in the boat, including a 3000m practice “race” for our upcoming 4k regatta. The boat was a bit more unstable than usual, so we did a lot of technique drills, which seemed to help. We are definitely planning on rowing together more often before the first “serious” races of the season. 

Nutrition

I have been developing a slight addition to matcha latte. It all started a few weeks ago when I took a spur-of-the-moment decision to order a few glasses of Attila Hildmann’s spaghetti bolognese sauce. They’re made in small batches and sell out within less than two hours usually and I really wanted to try them out before I start my new job. You never know, they might come in handy when you don’t have time to prepare lunch in advance, especially if it is hard to get vegan food within a reasonable walking distance of your office. Since I didn’t want to pay shipping for just four glasses of sauce, I decided to also order a tin of matcha powder. I’d had a tin from a different brand at home for a long time and it was getting quite empty anyway, so I thought “why not?” When I first tried it last week — of course, I had to finish the old one first — I was in love immediately. I’d never had such a smooth matcha latte before. It isn’t bitter at all and it tastes really fresh. I don’t think the one I had before ever tasted this good, even when it was still fresh. Sometimes I treat myself to two cups a day! At least I drink it instead of coffee and not in addition to it. Can you imagine the caffeine overload? Haha. The recipe — or rather formula — is: I mix 1tsp of matcha with a little bit of water (maybe 50ml) using a bamboo matcha whisk and then add a mixture of water and soy milk to it. You can add as much water and/or soy milk to it as you like, but I usually end up with almost 500ml (2 cups) of matcha latte. I used to sweeten my matcha lattes, but Attila’s powder is too tasty to obscure the taste with sweetener. I think my soy milk is sweetened a little bit with agave syrup, but it by no means tastes really sweet; it isn’t more than a hint of sweetness. In any case, it is really easy to experiment a little bit and find out yourself what you like. I have found a lot of recipes that either use rice drink or oat milk, but I almost always prefer my good old soy milk.

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