The Hunger Games – What to eat after working out
I often find that I am absolutely starving after a tough workout. By way of confession, I can recall on one occasion going out for a full on curry (naan bread, rice, the works) after feeling a little depleted following a long run!
Overeating is a mistake that people often make after working out. While it’s important to replenish your bodies with nutrients after exercise, it is also important to choose the right type of foods so as to avoid undoing the good work.
The science is relatively straight forward. Working out depletes the body’s supply of glycogen. Glycogen is responsible for repairing muscle mass in the body. Consuming the correct amount of protein and carbohydrates shortly after exercise, helps restore glycogen which in turn assists with muscle repair.
Getting the right balance of what to eat post workout is important. It is important not to overload on protein and carbs and find the calories consumed far exceed those used during exercise.
My research has thrown up some interesting suggestions. A study published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism in 2008 found that chocolate milk was more effective in recovery than branded fluid replacement drinks. It feels wrong I know but they found otherwise. Again just be a little cautious over how big a shake you drink.
Another interesting suggestion was the good old fashioned peanut butter sandwich. Add banana if you want to make this more filling. Channel your inner school child. Not for me though.
For those with a little more time (and for those who perhaps want to eat something different to that found in a school lunch box) then scrambled eggs with wholemeal toast is a sensible option. Eggs are loaded with protein. Each egg contains rough 12% of the recommended daily intake. Toast is always delicious. This is my recovery meal of choice.
Then again Chicken Jalfrezi is always tasty….