After a tough workout, your body needs the right follow-up care, whether that’s calorie replenishing, anti-inflammatory help for sore muscles, or avoiding muscle cramps. Eating or drinking the properly after a workout can mean the difference between training again tomorrow or being forced to take a rest day.
Thirty to forty five minutes after a workout, the body needs fuel. Otherwise, muscles start to atrophy. Protein and carbs are the basis of replenishing, combined with whatever other nourishment your body needs after your particular workout.
- Chocolate milk is a solid choice for a post-workout indulgence. It’s loaded with the same amount of protein and carbs as Gatorade, plus it’s typically a lot cheaper. The extra caffeine acts as a vasodilator to let blood circulate to muscles easily for recovery.
- Banana and coconut are your best friends if you frequently suffer from muscle cramping. The potassium, sodium, and calcium in both of these foods will help to stabilize muscles during and after workouts.
- Turmeric and ginger serve as anti-inflammatory agents; they’re great for fending off muscle soreness. The active ingredient, curcumin, triggers a response to shut off swelling.
- Honey is great for soothing sore muscles after particularly intense workouts. Adding some to yogurt, a smoothie, or tea can help throughout the day or night.
- Pasta paired with prosciutto (or other meat) and salad offers a source of carbs, protein, and vitamins for vigorous exercise that lasts for multiple days.
- Chicken chili is a wheat-free option for athletes who can’t tolerate gluten. The rice and chicken offer the carbs and protein you need to recoup without wreaking havoc on your digestive system.
- Chicken fried rice helps to replenish calories after periods of intense cardio. The added source of fat helps the included protein and carbs to go further.
- Salmon includes omega threes that reduce inflammation for long term muscle recovery.
- Power smoothies made from fruit, nuts, and protein powders serve as a source of nutrition, won’t interfere with building muscle mass, and even cool body temperature as an added bonus.
- Turkey is another lifting super-food. It contains minimal carbs, a huge source of protein, and helps to build muscle even after the workout ends.
Your post exercise meal needs to suit all of your particular needs depending on your favorite sort of workout. Carbs and protein are a given, but the form you ingest and any other properties of your chosen snack or meal have lots to do with the way your body recovers. Work hard; recover well.