Spokes and Spuds: Trying out the Garmin boiled potato recipe

Athletes | June 12, 2012 | By

We’ve been pining to try out Dr. Allen Lim’s boiled potato/bike fuel recipe, the one famously prepared for the uber amazing Garmin-Cervelo pro cycling team. Who wouldn’t be tempted, after all? What could possibly go wrong? It’s just a potato. A de-skinned, dare I say “cute” little potato rolled in salt, a light splash of olive oil, and freshly grated parmesan cheese.  So easy, yet so novel.

Making them takes next to no effort. It’s even therapeutic, like making playdough. You just boil up some potatoes (new potatoes are the perfect size), 15-20 minutes. After boiling, run them under cool water, and the skins slip off just like that.

You’ve got a charming little nugget that happens to be a high-glycemic, instant energy source, perfect for long rides or hikes (perhaps a bit too heavy for the long run, though). As Dr. Lin explains in the video, wherein he models the simple process, removing the skins removes fiber, and you’re left with carbohydrate, potassium, and a little bit of protein. It’s like a ball of Claymation dough ready for action.

All that’s missing is salt, and a little bit of fat. This part’s weirdly fun, too. Just roll your de-skinned potatoes around in a dish or tray with a little salt and olive oil. Grate some parmesan, and roll around some more. There you go–you know exactly what you’re fueling with, and you’re in charge of how much of each ingredient. Wrap them up in foil (fold one half over, and fold back to make a seam, then same with the other half, and close up the ends), you’re good to go.  Fits great in your jersey pocket.

We’d waited a good long stretch to try out these potatoes. We’d really built them up, in fact. For endurance junkies, we haven’t been doing anything that extended yet this season. Our big goals are a ways away. We’re heading to Redman for USAT long course nationals at the end of September, and we’re still vacillating over what event to sign up for in December: another marathon, a 50K, or a 50-miler. This summer is more of an eclectic mix of shorter tris, 14ers, and trail running. On Saturday, however, somewhat on a whim we decided to go ahead with a hot, hilly, 70-mile ride with Lindsey. Finally,  a spud-tacular opportunity.

Seventy miles shouldn’t have seemed so mammoth for this time of year, but it did. Dave and Lindsey are significantly faster cyclists than I, by a long shot. Even drafting them the whole way was going to be a stretch, I thought. Good thing I had The Potato to bolster my confidence. I wasn’t sure how I’d handle the jump in mileage, but I was sure The Potato could pull its weight, and it did. I may have lost a couple gallons of water out there in the baking heat, with the billowing, menacing High Park fire in the backdrop, but I didn’t bonk.

Thanks, little Potato. You’re a spud–I mean stud.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Gaby
    June 12, 2012

    This is AMAZING! Do you think it’d be too bad to give it a shot DURING Ironman for the first time?? I am done with long rides before the big day, but a few extra carbs don’t sound like a bad idea for such long day. 🙂

    • Wendy McMillan
      June 12, 2012

      Gaby, I’m excited for you and your big day! Do you get special needs bags at CDA? Maybe that would be a good place to store…

      • Gaby
        July 3, 2012

        Gosh! I JUST saw this! I wish I could get a notification when you reply to my reply! 😉

        I did get special needs, but I toughed it out and had prepped myself to not use them. Went all out without bike special needs or run special needs (made me feel tough). Didn’t try them though, just to not upset the stomach while on such a crazy regimen… But will try this next month while training for Boulder 70.3! 🙂
        I LOVE your blog, btw!

        • Wendy McMillan
          July 3, 2012

          Gaby!! Thanks so much for your “liking”!! Can I have your blog link, when you get a chance? Really looking forward to catching up with you guys! As usual, it’s been too long!

  2. Mary Nodine
    June 12, 2012

    This post just made my day. Adorable. I will have to try this!

    • Wendy McMillan
      June 12, 2012

      Thanks, Mary! I miss you! How’s your week going? Maybe catch up a little more? : )

  3. Dave
    June 12, 2012

    These were great! Very easy on the stomach and one training food that actually tastes better in hot weather. Liked the use of spudtacular 🙂

    • Wendy McMillan
      June 12, 2012

      Thanks, Davy. Glad you approve!

  4. JenHowie
    July 3, 2012

    I am going to do these for Craigs next long run. I know you dint suggest them for runs, but lots of ultra runners eat potatoes I believe right? I will let you know how they sit for him. Sounds delicious!

    • Wendy McMillan
      July 4, 2012

      Jen, I ALMOST included a note saying that ultra-running could be an exception! I was thinking I’d try it for Leadville (pacing!) training. Keep me posted on how it works out for Craig! : )

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