Some people think coffee is somehow bad for you, but here's my conclusion: it's not and it's delicious. I am a regular coffee drinker, but I'm also a very nervous athlete so for a long time I avoided drinking coffee before races. Then one day in the spring of 2008 I was desperate: I hadn't PRed on my 2k erg test in 2 years and I had one last shot for the season. Figuring it couldn't get any worse, I downed a cup of coffee before the test... and PRed by 5 seconds. (For those of you who don't know, this is a ~7 minute test so 5 seconds is pretty significant, especially after not improving for 2 years.) Turns out, the science backs this, caffeine is really performance enhancing.
This pumpkin spice latte is made with pure pumpkin, coconut milk (those medium chain triglycerides will definitely help too!) and strong coffee. If that's not enough, it's flavored with cinnamon and ginger, two herbs that are known to be anti-inflammatory.
Pumpkin Spice Latte
1c strong coffee
2T pureed pumpkin
1/2c coconut milk
2 drops vanilla
dashes of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves
maple syrup to taste
Brew an extra-strong pot of coffee (or use your espresso maker). In a blender, combine pumpkin, coconut milk, vanilla, and spices. Puree until smooth, then transfer to a microwave safe mug. Microwave for 1 minute or until warm. Add a splash of maple syrup & stir. Pour yourself a cup of that coffee and top it off with the pumpkin spice creation. Enjoy and get ready to kill it on your ride/ long run/ hike/ life in general!