Top 5 Recovery Foods
So we’ve covered pre-workout snacks, now let’s focus on what you consume after your workouts. This step is arguably the most important part of your workout because when you exercise you deplete your body’s glycogen (the carb stored in your muscles and liver). That’s why it’s extremely vital that you replace what you lose so you can get the most out of your hard work.
Through my own personal experience and speaking with several personal trainers, I have come up with this list of the best post-workout meals:
5. Piece of fish and baked potato — A muscle-building packed combination of quality protein and complex carbohydrates, this meal is a great way to end your workout. Go for salmon or tilapia as these have the highest amounts of protein.
4. Chicken breast or steak and rice — Another classic meal that will maximize your workout. If you’re buying steak make sure to pick sirloin or a lean cut which are a lot healthier. Don’t forget the whole grain rice either!
3. Protein bar — This is only third on our list because it is a solid and will take a bit longer to absorb than its liquid counterparts. However, it’s still a very effective post-workout meal. In this instance don’t go for “Low carb” bars, instead buy a protein or meal replacement bar that has plenty of calories and carbohydrates to go along with at least 30 grams of protein. I like the MET-RX meal replacement bars.
2. Chocolate milk — This surprisingly effective recovery drink was almost a unanimous pick for all the experts I interviewed. Two cups of this stuff averages about 310-320 calories, 50 grams of carbs, and 16 grams of protein. Of course the liquid consistency will allow it to be absorbed quickly and carried to your depleted muscles.
1. Protein drink with whey — The original and still the best. No other food or drink can compare to the punch this packs when it comes to optimizing your workout. Whey protein is absorbed the fastest by your body and the liquid form will bring it to your muscles that much faster. If it’s a low carb protein add in some berries or a banana to give it a boost. Optimum Nutrition’s Hydro Whey is a good pick!
All of these foods should all be taken within 45 minutes after completion of your workout for best results.