Did you know that sports drinks and supplement drink companies make over a billion dollars in sales every year? While you could do without some name brand sugar infused sports drinks after your workout (it’ll just turn to fat), you could benefit from a recovery drink or two to enhance your health and speed up your muscle recovery. In this article, we’ll address the important question: do recovery drinks make a difference, and what type of drink is right for you?
The Importance of Recovery Drinks
After a hard workout, there’s no doubt about it—your body has gone through the ringer! Your muscles are sore, your joints have been put under pressure and you are massively dehydrated. Many people make the mistake of eating a carb heavy meal without nearly enough water to hydrate, post-workout. The great news is you don’t have to spend a fortune on expensive, bottled drinks that are marketed for post-run or weight lifting. In fact, you can probably reach for a drink you have in your fridge.
Here’s a breakdown so you know what to consume after an intense spin class, or a grueling weight lifting session:
· Coconut water. While coconut water has emerged as a steadfastly growing trend in the last few years, it contains amazing benefits for your post-workout routine! It has a subtle, almond flavor, but if you don’t like it by itself, pour about ten ounces into a blender (combined with your favorite greens and frozen fruit) and bam!—you’ve just consumed an amazing boost of potassium, which helps your muscles to relax and heal.
· Chocolate milk. Don’t think of chocolate milk as an indulgence—think of it as a protein boost that your body desperately needs to repair and rebuild. Drinking 5 ounces of chocolate milk can actually speed up your recovery time and restore your hydration better than some sports drinks can. In addition, it has lots of other stuff that’s great for your bones and muscles, too—like calcium, vitamin D and the perfect blend of protein and carbs that your muscles crave.
· Green tea. Green tea isn’t just one of the best metabolism boosters you can drink—it’s also perfect for reducing the severity of muscles that were damaged during your high intensity interval training. Who knew it could be such a miracle drink? Drink it hot or iced, and reap the benefits of a higher metabolism, a flatter belly and the ability to repair an achy body…all in one!
No matter what you put your body through—a hot yoga class, a ten mile bike ride or a grueling boot camp session outdoors, there’s the perfect post-workout drink to sooth, heal and repair your body from head to toe. Drink up and reap the benefits of a well hydrated body…it’s worth every sip!