After a long run, recovery is key. Focusing on recovery means you can get back to pounding the pavement sooner and more efficiently. When your body is in recovery mode, you are building up muscles. Being smart about what you consume after running is one of the most important steps to gain muscle strength and endurance over time. Eating the right recovery foods is the simplest way to a quick recovery.
When it comes to post-run foods, stick with the ones that are high in protein and simple carbs to regenerate your energy. Foods that are rich in nutrients and minerals are also essential in maintaining your physical potential. Always try to avoid processed foods and stick to real, whole ingredients.
At Inspired Endurance, we have put together a list of 5 best recovery foods for your post-run meals. With the right combination of nutrients, proteins, and carbs, you will be able to maximize the benefits of your long runs!
Carbohydrates are incredibly important to the body and even more so when you are training hard. Carbohydrates provide the energy required to perform high-intensity exercises. Not all carbs are created equal, though, so it’s important to choose wisely. Keep in mind that after any intense workout, you would want to look for foods with a high glycemic index. These foods aid to speed up the recovery process. A food item that fits the bill is actually plain and simple – white rice.
If you are a meat lover, chicken is a standard go-to for healthy protein. Protein is a macronutrient that builds and maintains body tissue for a healthy muscle recovery. Athletes across the board prefer chicken as their number one source of protein to others because it is lean and low in fat. Chicken also fills you up without leaving you bloated or heavy. It has a great source of vitamin B, phosphorous, iron, and selenium. Each of these components helps to increase metabolism and oxygen absorption. It’s simple and quick to prepare as well.
A simple and delicious addition to a post-run meal is ginger. It can add a bit of spice and flavor to simple dishes like white rice with chicken and vegetables. More importantly, it also aids in healing inflammation. Ginger’s powerful properties can help speed up the relief of muscle soreness.
More specifically, a combination of almonds or cashews along with dried fruits like raisins and cranberry makes a perfect post-workout snack. Trail mix is often high on the glycemic index, offering a good dose of protein and simple carbs. The better part? You can just carry a small bag with you while you go for a run so you can enjoy the snacks anywhere.
This is a classic choice for post workouts of any kind. Bananas offer a high dose of potassium, which helps with boosting muscle strength, metabolism, water balance, and electrolytic functions. Also, no effort needed – just peel one! Bananas make the perfectly convenient snack to fill your stomach until you have time for a more substantial meal.
What is your favorite post-run recovery food? Share with us in the comments below!