This picture is a great way to sum up the leap back into some serious miles on the bike. After a 70-mile hilly ride the other weekend, I was just glad to be able to collapse on the cold wooden floor. Getting up again after that was the worst! A nice cold beer (or two) helped with the recovery, though 🙂
Once the legs have logged a bit of time on the bike, it gets a bit easier to maintain a fast steady speed, but the first few weeks just hurt (mentally and physically). I feel like I go through phases on the long hard bike rides where I’m swearing like a drunken sailor at anything and everything (in my head, of course), and 10 minutes later, I’m on the brink of crying (and sometimes do a little bit behind the conveniently dark sunglasses!). I know I’ve had a good ride and given it my all when both of these personalities rear their ugly heads! Sounds crazy, but I sort of love it. There’s no better feeling than knowing you have given it everything you have. It’s a beautiful feeling, too, when you get on the bike one day and realize that the hard work has paid off and you feel fast. It makes all the hard times worth it.
Upping the mileage on the bike requires good, clean fuel, and this quinoa is perfect for that. The high-protein quinoa and chicken sausage will keep you full for a while, and it’s a great recovery meal so that you’re ready to go again the next day! Leftovers are also delicious wrapped in a tortilla for an easy lunch.
Quinoa with Chard, Sausages, and Corn
1.5 cups quinoa
3 cups vegetable broth
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch chard
4 mushrooms, sliced
2 chicken sausages, sliced
2 ears corn, grilled or boiled and corn removed from ears
1. Bring vegetable broth to a boil in a medium pot. Add quinoa and turn heat down to low. Cover and cook for approx. 20 minutes until quinoa has absorbed all the liquid and is nice and fluffy.
2. Meanwhile, separate the chard leaves from the stalks. Dice stalks and slice up leaves into bite-size pieces.
3. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. (If chicken sausages are not pre-cooked, add to pan at this point and saute until cooked. If they are pre-cooked, then begin with chard stalks.)
4. Add chard stalks and saute for a few minutes.
5. Add garlic, mushrooms, and sausage and saute, stirring frequently, for a few more minutes until garlic is fragrant and the sausage is beginning to brown.
6. Add chard leaves and corn and cook until chard is beginning to wilt.
7. Turn off heat and add quinoa to pan, mixing everything together.
8. Enjoy either as is or with a healthy sprinkle of cheese!
Watching the Tour de France has been especially inspiring lately, since I have (drumroll, please…