Great you’ve done your exercise, but how can we ensure our
body appropriately refuels after exercise?
This quick guide will give some basic tips allowing you to
optimally nutritionally recover.
This is crucial! This differs due to the
intensity, duration and climate of the exercise, but rehydration is crucial to
avoid being dehydrated. When in a hot and humid environment, sweat rate also
increases, so rehydration is even more important. Water is greatly beneficial, as well as added
sodium to help rehydrate after very intense exercise. In addition, drinking to
thirst often leads to insufficient rehydration, so planning your drinking and
being aware that you need to consume more can be beneficial and help avoid
dehydration. On average we need 2L a day, but if you do an intense workout your intake should increase.
Carbohydrate and Protein refuel:
Between 30 minutes and 2 hours post training, its recommended
to consume a 15-25g of protein along side some carbohydrate as a recovery snack.
Here are some post workout snack ideas:
– Fruit Smoothie
– Rice cake with peanut butter and apple
– Bowl of cereal
– Trail mix
Ultimately depending on your type of activity, duration and
intensity. For example, strength based vs cardio based have different energy requirements
and impacts on the body.
The idea of post workout food and drink is to allow your
body to replace the fuel you have lost, for example to replace the glycogen stores reduced
through carbohydrate intake and help stimulate muscle protein synthesis (muscle
growth after a workout where your muscles proteins are broken-down) and replace
the fluid you’ve lost through sweating/respiration.
Please note these are general recommendations, and if you
are more active than the general population guidelines (150 minutes of
moderate-vigorous activity and strength training 2 x a week) specialist
nutritional advice may be needed. Ultimately, your nutritional recovery post
exercise should be very specific to your exercise demands, and specific energy