|Post Spartan Beast
Sometimes my work actually fuels my blogging, figuratively. Today I headed to Boston for a conference among the many speakers and topics discussed one was fueling the body and post workout nutrition. It caught my eye and well, figured I would share a few nuggets of knowledge I know and have picked up over the years.
We all know how to push our bodies during a workout or race and coming home the hardest thing to know is when to eat and what to eat after exercise. Sometimes it seems like I am forcing myself to eat after a hard sprint workout. Some run straight for the post-workout powders others for a bottle of chocolate milk. Really post workout can be broken up into two stages:
Stage 1: Right After the Workout is over the what you eat
Stage 2: The stuff you eat later to help continue to recovery
The reasoning behind rehydrating is to help:
– Replenish Glycogen
– Decrease Muscle Breakdown (make you less sore)
– Promote muscle protein synthesis (make your muscles bigger)
– Boost immune system (make you not get sick after running in the rain)
Stage 1 Recovery:
This is what you want to eat right when you get home from a long run or lift, it’s that time when you are prepping your ice bath that you grab a quick snack. You are going to want this snack to be low fat carbohydrates and protein rich and really it is best to get this snack in within 30 to 60 minutes after you workout. If you have a commute home from the gym pack the snack.
You might wonder just what type of snacks are best, one of the originals (which I cannot consume) and is my training partners favorite is chocolate milk. Add a pinch of salt, don’t over do it, to the milk to help re-hydrate faster. A tip I learned today. Other good snacks are three hard boiled eggs and a banana, PBJ, greek yogurt with fresh berries and granola, two string cheeses and a piece of fruit, and hummus and veggie pita with a hard boiled egg. These are just a few options and by no means are the end all be all but they are a jumping off point. I personally like Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter
on a apple, really any type of peanut butter!
Ok to give you more specifics: (From USST Handout)
Carbohydrates: Eat 30 – 100 grams of carbohydrate to begin replenishing depleted glycogen stores and maintain a strong immune system
Protein: Eat 10 -20 grams of protein to begin to repair damaged tissue
Fat: Too much fat will delay the absorption of carbohydrates and protein, so try to keep your fat intake to <3g per 100 calories
Fluid: Drinking 20 – 24 ounces of water and/or sports drink for every pound that you lose during training will help your body get re-hydrated.
If you are at a race and cannot get real food go for a bar or beverage but if you can real food is way more enjoyable and will give you a better boost in your recovery.
Stage 2 Recovery:
I love to eat, and the best part about working out is getting to eat afterwards, basically what stage two entails eating a meal within two – three hours of training. If you are Paleo eat Paleo. If you love some other food eat that, for me after a long run (over a half marathon) all my body wants is pizza, seriously pizza. It is important to keep the fuel coming in order to continue the recovery process. A well balanced meal is best, but if you are craving that one thing and that one thing only, go for it!
Overall, how you fuel your body is not only critical while working out but it is also essential to recovering faster the next day. Remember even though food is fuel it should also be tasty and fun. Enjoy your food find out what works for you, because in the end we are all experiments of one.