Fueling your body after a strenuous workout is the best way to get the most out of your hard work and sweat. Keep these tips and notes in mind post-workout to keep your body strong and take it to the next level.
First and foremost, nutrition is fitness and vice versa. The better fuel you put in your body, the better you’ll feel and perform.
Hydration: The number one thing you need post-workout is hydration and electrolyte (Sodium and Potassium) repletion – Gatorade is a quick way to do this, but go light on the sugary stuff. Replenish first with water and a splash of an electrolyte-rich drink.
Recovery: Begin nutrition recovery 15-20 minutes after workout. This is when your muscles and body needs it the most. If you’re not hungry, choose liquid foods, like a smoothie. Sports bars are great too, but just like Gatorade, use them for recovery only, not just any old snack.
Replace: You need to replace muscle fuel and provide your body with protein to aid in the repair, renewal and growth of muscle, especially if you’re weight training/lifting. Working out is a continual process of strain and tiny muscle tears to grow faster and stronger. Protein consumed after exercise will provide amino acids for building and repair of muscle tissue.
Build in an extra ‘set’ for your post-workout nutrition recovery:
1.) Hydrate! Water and a splash of sports drink
2.) Fuel up fast, but don’t fill up – keep it light
3.) Protein! It’s the key to muscle growth and recovery
Below is a great recovery snack and meal ideas:
– Graham crackers with peanut butter + low-fat chocolate milk + banana
– Whole wheat pita sandwich with turkey and veggies + pretzels + low-fat milk
– Rice bowl with beans, cheese, salsa, avocado + whole grain tortilla chips or
whole wheat tortilla
– Stir fry with lean steak, broccoli, bell peppers, carrots + brown rice
Audrey Oman is a Registered Dietitian and credentialed by the Commission on Dietetic Registration. Any article written by Audrey Oman is based on her own personal experiences, research, and education as a Dietitian. Always consult one-on-one with a registered dietitian or medical doctor in your area if you have nutritional concerns that need to be addressed. These articles are designed for informational purposes only – it is not meant to substitute for the advice given by your own physician or dietitian. To find a registered dietitian in the U.S. visit the American Dietetic Association http://www.eatright.org/programs/rdfinder/