Do you workout a lot and are looking to maximise the effects of your exercise regime by eating the best food afterwards? If you look this up online, you’ll be hit with a million and one pages to read through, with many of them saying different things. It’s a bit of a minefield and can be confusing to the average Joe. Fear not, because here at Philip Wood Physiotherapy we have great information at our fingertips and want to share it with you.
We’ll keep this simple…
No fancy scientific words here to confuse the brain. There are a few foodstuffs that are particularly important when it comes to improving your muscle recovery following a workout. The key players here are protein, carbohydrates and water.
Protein is the building block of every cell in our body (it’s pretty important!). During a workout, the proteins that make up muscle cells break down. After they’ve broken down, the body goes through a recovery process whereby these muscle proteins are repaired and some new cells are built. This is how our muscles get bigger. Eating a healthy source of protein after a workout can give the muscles the building blocks they need to recover and get stronger.
Good sources of protein include eggs, chicken, fish, Greek or other high-protein yoghurts, and cottage cheese. Some people also opt for protein powders and bars to help them reach their protein requirements.
Carbohydrates (aka ‘carbs’) are the body’s main energy source. The movement we do during a workout uses energy. Our muscles store energy so that when we need it to smash out a solid weights session (or any exercise of your choice), we have it there ready to go. After a workout the stores of energy are depleted, and we need to replenish them to ensure we have more in the bank for the next thing we want to do.
Good sources of carbohydrate include dark green leafy vegetables (such as kale and spinach), sweet potatoes, fruit, rice, quinoa, and pasta.
Our bodies are made up of approximately 70% water. It is literally everywhere in the body. For all the crazy chemical process that occur in the body every second, we need water to allow it to happen. During and after exercise, the body loses water through sweating. It is vital to drink plenty of water after exercising (as well as before and during… Just drink it all the time, pretty please) to make sure we stay hydrated and to maximise the recovery process.
Better still, good sources of water are easy to find! We recommend starting with the tap in your kitchen! 😜
A helpful tip
Evidence suggests that eating a post-workout meal combining a 3:1 ratio of carbs to protein will maximise your recovery. Try brown rice with grilled salmon and kale for a powerful, nutritious meal. And drink water before, during and after exercise. We also think you should give us a call to book an appointment, so we can have a more detailed chin-wag about this if you so desire. Call us on 9838 3030 today!