Post-Workout Nutrition to Aid Recovery
Post-workout recovery is important for getting the most out of an exercise routine. First, your muscles need protein and amino acids to rebuild and repair themselves. Second, exercise depletes our reserves of electrolytes, so we need to rehydrate correctly. Lastly, regular exercise causes wear and tear on our body that can lead to pain and soreness. That’s why proper post-workout nutrition is a must. The right vitamins, minerals, and botanicals can help reduce inflammation and keep you going strong. Let’s take a look at some of the best post-workout supplement options available.
Protein is crucial after exercise. When we work out we encounter resistance – whether it’s the water in the pool as we swim, the mass of the weights we’re lifting, or our own body weight as we run or do pushups. As we work through this resistance, our muscle fibers tear slightly. Don’t worry, this is by design. After the activity is over, these fibers begin to repair themselves into a stronger form. They need protein to do this, and it’s essential that they get enough. Otherwise, they will not regrow stronger and your strength will not increase. While food provides much of the protein we receive, it often isn’t enough for active people. That’s why protein is one of the most important components of post-workout nutrition.
There is a wealth of options available when it comes to protein supplementation; powders, bars, shakes, and more. As a general rule, 20 grams per serving is plenty. Many protein options also contain additional amino acids, powdered vegetables, and other nutrient boosters.
Experiment with different protein sources to find which one is best for you.
CBD is increasingly popular with the world’s elite athletes. This compound binds with specific receptors in the brain, helping to regulate inflammation response. This can lead to feelings of reduced stress and soreness, as well as overall relaxation. Studies also suggest CBD may have a benefit on brain, joint, and immune health as well. If you’re feeling especially sore after your workouts, CBD can help get you back on track.
CBD is available in gummies, oils, capsules, drinks, and more. However, using a more concentrated source, such as an oil, can be a more potent delivery method for those in need of rapid relief.
Turmeric is a spice used in both Indian cuisine and traditional Indian medicine. Notably, it contains curcuminoids, which are potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant agents. As with CBD, taking turmeric supplements can reduce soreness and feelings of cumulative fatigue. Turmeric is also beneficial for alleviating other kinds of chronic inflammation, such as arthritis and heart disease. This makes turmeric supplementation a good idea for folks who are exercising with existing conditions. Adding turmeric supplements into your post-workout nutrition routine is a great way to stay pain-free and active.
Proper hydration is vital for both performance and recovery. Electrolytes contained in water transmit signals from our nervous system to the rest of our body. As we sweat, these electrolytes become more and more scarce, requiring us to replace them by drinking fluids. Hydration is also a major factor when it comes to recovery; our bodies use fluid to circulate nutrients to our muscles and enable them to heal. Improper hydration can also lead to muscle cramping, low energy, and decreased strength and endurance.
If you have lost a significant amount of fluid due to vigorous exercise, regular water might not cut it for rehydration. Instead, explore electrolyte powders and drinks, or make your own. Adding a pinch of Himalayan salt and a squeeze of lemon juice to water can increase its hydrating power. Coconut water is also a great way to recover lost sodium and potassium electrolytes.
Make sure you’re taking care of yourself inside and out. Maintaining a solid post-workout recovery routine will shorten bouts with soreness and help prevent injury. Remember, consistency is key!