Dark Rye: Epic

In this issue, Dark Rye highlights Revival through the animal experience of presence with the co-founders of EPIC protein bar. Here’s their story.

In this issue, Dark Rye highlights Revival opens in a new tab through the animal experience of presence with the co-founders of EPIC protein bar. Here’s their story.

What’s on your mind? Maybe money and the rent, your ex, what must be done — later. How things should’ve went down — before. How things are, and/or how they ought to be. Memory. Conjecture. Abstraction. Until, as the co-founders of EPIC protein bars — Taylor Colins and Katie Forrest — explain, you get on your bike and all that airy nothing gets blown away by the palpable presence of what is right now — this very moment — really and truly happening between a body and a world. How do my legs feel? How hard am I breathing? How much longer can I go? How much farther can I go? A heightened connection to the sensory experience of life as it always occurred before the tyranny of clocks. The mad unrestrained revival of joy.

Survive and Conquer

Are you interested in trying a triathlon? How about Tough Mudder? Or a half-marathon? Maybe you want to watch 65 episodes in a row of a show on Netflix. In any case, you’re on the way to becoming an endurance athlete. We understand your needs. And we’re going to get you ready. Here’s a Dark Rye and EPIC primer for endurance sports:

1. Preparation

Take it slow. You’ll want to get into training gradually because it’s the best way to avoid injury. It’s also very important to have fun and enjoy your sport. Find people to train with and make it a social event. Or if, like many endurance athletes, you don’t enjoy the company of people, try listening to music or a podcast.

2. Physical Training

First, set goals. Pick some “A” events for the year, preferably ones that will fit into your schedule and are in cool cities. Then, it’s time for daily workouts. Choose a regimen that focuses on specific skills required for your event, like hill workouts, long endurance sessions, strength training or, for competitive eating challenges, hot-dog consumption. This will give your muscles a solid base and will help you avoid injury.

3. Mental Training

It’s important to be in the proper state of mind. Go through mental rehearsals and visualization drills. Meditate. Get enough sleep so you are not grumpy when you’re hanging out with your family. In general, the only way your body becomes stronger is if you allow it adequate rest. This is when your muscles adapt.

4. Clothing

Make sure it fits right; no snuggies! Choose performance fabrics that are designed to regulate body temperature and protect you from the elements. Don’t underestimate, as your Uncle Lou once told you, the power of the perfect pair of socks. And don’t count out superstitions. If you have a favorite color or a top that makes you feel sexy and gives you a “power advantage,” then wear it! Crowds will gaze at you in awe as you cruise by.

5. Food

You won’t be a champ unless you maintain exceptional nutrition. Most athletes eat pasta, bread and pizza before races, and that’s wrong. Down with carbo-loading! It teaches your metabolism to rely on converting carbs into energy via insulin spike. Instead, eat a well-balanced, whole-food meal that focuses on leafy organic greens, grass-fed animal protein and fats such as coconut oil and avocado. This allows your body to burn fat during your event. You’ll never feel tired, you’ll never get old, and you’ll never die.

6. More Food

During your event, avoid high-sugar and carbohydrate-dense foods. Salty and fatty foods like bacon help your body convert fat into energy. Other in-game winners are sweet potatoes, dehydrated cantaloupe and pineapples, almond butter and sprouted seeds. Also drink chia seed concoctions, coconut waters and electrolyte mixes, the fave choices of mixologists from Seattle to Brooklyn.

7. And Still More Food

After a hard race, your body needs protein. Gulp down a big grass-fed steak or ground lamb like a starving dog. Also a side salad, if you’re feeling guilty. Dessert is a big party, too, assuming you like desserts that don’t contain grain, sugar and gluten.

8. Afterward

Sleep for a week, you nutty type A endurance athlete. You’ve earned it!

For more from EPIC, including recipes opens in a new tab and photos opens in a new tab, visit DarkRye.com opens in a new tab.

Have you ever endured through an epic adventure? Tell us about it in the comments below.

Dark Rye opens in a new tab is an online magazine from Whole Foods Market that explores the realms of food, health, sustainability, design, technology and social enterprise. Get fresh insight from our mixtape of stories, recipes, creative projects and people — pioneers of unconventional who explore the edges of a creative life.

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