What to consume post workout

What to consume post workout

Certain foods and drinks make us recover, refuel and rehydrate better than others post-workout. Which should you be picking to ensure you stay feeling tip top?

It depends on which workout you’re undertaking but it’s fair to say that staying hydrated is key in all disciplines.

Water is always best, but if you’re looking to replace electrolytes after long distance or long duration cardio, then make sure you steer clear of strange coloured “sports drinks” and instead opt for something like coconut water.

Carb-loading is a term that’s bandied around quite a bit, but everyone is different when it comes to how many carbs you need to take on board before an event or workout. What’s important is that afterwards you recharge your energy levels and help recovery with a balanced meal, such as fish, veg and a few potatoes. Don’t overdo the carbs, but include a portion within the meal. Try and keep away from sweet or unhealthy quick-release energy options.

With weights and strength workouts the idea is to only take on the amount of food that your body needs to perform the activity, therefore gaining muscle definition and not putting on extra fat.  Protein shakes are a good option for after a strength session, or a ready-weighed out meal that is protein based.

Any high intensity sessions can cause inflammation, so to counteract that you could try foods high in omega 3 fatty acids, like oily-fish, flaxseeds, eggs and dairy products.

After something more focused on stretching and mindfulness such as yoga or Pilates, try a detoxing green tea, or a shot of wheatgrass. These caffeine free drinks are both cleansing and refreshing and flush out toxins from the body. A great way to continue your healthy workout!

Try to eat light meals, both before and after workouts, so you don’t feel bloated and uncomfortable. Try and only take on board the calories you need to perform your exercise, rather than loading up unnecessarily on junk.

Listen to your body and you’ll be able to gauge exactly what works for you after a work-out.


The Author

Laura Briggs

Laura is a fitness writer who loves running, strength training, Pilates and Yoga. When she's got time to herself you might find her knitting, or in the kitchen trying out an elaborate recipe - healthy of course!.


Emma C.
7 August 2016

Emma C.

I used to think that drinks with electrolytes were a marketing gimmick. However, after reading stuff on the internet I understand why they are needed after workouts. But I have never heard of coconut milk for doing the same thing. Great to hear as I always prefer a natural answer.

craig t.
4 August 2016

craig t.

I keep it simple and have the same thing after each workout - a smoothie with berries, yoghurt, peanut butter and banana. Works for me.

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