With every run, what is critical is not just the workout itself, but also the process of recovery afterwards. You have to make sure that you're giving your body the fuel it needs to recover for your next workout.
After a workout, your body's glycogen (stored carbohydrates) stores deplete. Without the right post-run nutrition, your body will not recover in time, causing a decrease in performance at the next workout.
This is where recovery food comes in. The most effective way to recharge yourself is to eat food with the right mix of carbohydrates and protein within 30-45 minutes after your workout. According to sports scientists, you should consume 0.2 to 0.4 grammes of protein and 0.8 grammes of carbohydrates for every kilogramme of weight, per hour of exercise done.
Note that the following food list we are about to share is best for endurance runners who work out regularly. For the casual runner, you can adopt a similar diet in smaller proportions.
So without further ado, presenting our list of 12 awesome post-run food for a good recovery!
Why it's awesome: It widens and relaxes blood vessels, promoting the flow of oxygen-rich blood throughout your body, which is excellent for delivering nutrients efficiently to all muscle groups. This is supported by a study from the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. Moreover, as compared to regular milk, it packs a greater punch in terms of carbohydrates and protein just what your tired muscles need post-workout.
Peanut Butter and Honey Sandwich
Why it's awesome: It's filling, tasty and contains healthy complex carbohydrates! Peanut butter is rich in protein, while honey possesses anti-inflammatory properties to counter those overly tender muscles or achy joints.
Why it's awesome: After a workout, your muscles become weak with minimal potassium stores left. Bananas are a great solution because they are rich in potassium that aids in muscle contraction and recharges your sore muscles for the next workout. Not to mention that they are apt for preventing cramps as well!
Meal Replacement Drink
Why it's awesome: In addition to a right mix of carbohydrates and protein, these drinks also tend to contain a wide assortment of vitamins and minerals. Choose wisely!
Why it's awesome: Fruit smoothies are a good source of fibre, vitamins and iron. Plus, you can choose fruits of your preferred taste as well!
Why it's awesome: As the name suggests, its rich in protein and contains a condensed pack of vitamins and minerals as well, empowering you with a quick and convenient boost.
Why it's awesome: A healthy low-fat choice, packed with protein and rich in minerals. Check out this article for the wonders of chicken breast!
Why it's awesome: Widely touted as Natures Sports Drink, coconut water contains considerable amounts of the five essential electrolytes: sodium, magnesium, calcium, potassium and phosphorous. As your body loses electrolytes from sweat in work-outs, they will need to be replenished to prevent symptoms such as fatigue and nausea. Coconut water is great for doing just that.
Why it's awesome: Pasta is a magnificent source of carbohydrates and protein to replenish your energy stores and facilitates muscle repair. You cant deny that delicious creamy taste as well!
Why it's awesome: Enriched with lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids, salmon consumption reduces muscle inflammation and increases muscle repair. Not to mention its great-tasting as well; yes, even when raw. Sashimi, anyone?
Low-Fat Granola Cereal
Why it's awesome: A right mix of carbohydrates, protein and fibre ensures steady recovery for your muscles. Choose your brand of cereal wisely!
Why it's awesome: Almonds are not only an excellent source of protein, fibre and healthy fats but also contain calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium and vitamin E! Widely regarded as a superfood, these nuts are a welcome addition to any athlete looking at a nutritionally-dense diet for post-workout recovery.
"What is critical is not just the workout itself, but also the process of recovery thereafter."
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