For those that know me well you will have guessed that Vietnam was not a relaxing beach holiday, in fact what I failed to mention is that we covered quite a lot of Vietnam, from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi to be precise, with over 500 km of it done on bikes - definitely the best way to see a country.
But that was really just a warm-up as, in 7 days time I will be heading back out east, to cycle from Bangkok to Singapore - a few more miles this time - around 1200!
So on returning from Vietnam, my first thought was how could I train in such a short space of time for such a monumental bike ride? Well, no doubt you will have heard of High Intensity Training (HIT) that is now becoming the norm - short bursts of flat-out training with rests in between, meaning that instead of spending hours on the bike, I can sit on the turbo trainer for less than one hour each day and hopefully get the same results.
My aim on day one was to do 10 x 1 minute sprints - I managed 6! On day three I managed to increase it to 8. Today my bike has gone for a service and now needs a new wheel, so no bike for 3 days - training has all gone to pot!!
The other thing I'm always aware of before travelling is to be sure my immune system is strong, to try to prevent foreign bacteria having an undesirable effect. So as well as taking a probiotic and oregano oil (a potent germ killer) for the past two weeks, I am feeding myself with all the healthy foods I enjoyed in Vietnam. Can't wait for the Thai food to come!
Prawn and Vegetable Rice Noodles
This is really a 'make it up as you go along recipe', as any amounts of these great ingredients works.
Stir fry vegetable oil, sesame oil, chopped ginger, lemon grass, red chilli, spring onions and garlic for a couple of minutes before adding stock. Bring to a simmer and add chopped pak choi, beansprouts, cooked rice noodles and prawns. Simmer for 5-6 minutes.
As with a lot of foods this tastes even better the following day!
PS This beautiful bowl was bought from Reaching Out in Hoi An, an enterprise that was established in 2000 showcasing high quality handicrafts made by disabled craftspeople in Vietnam