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What to Eat After a Workout

The Magic Ratio For Recovery


Replenishing your body post-workout is just as important as what you eat before you hit the road or gym. If your workout is over an hour, or you run over six miles, you need to refuel your muscles so they will be ready for your next workout.

Thirty to 45 minutes after working out, your body is more responsive to insulin, which helps the muscles pull glucose, made from carbs, out of the bloodstream and into the muscle. You should aim to eat 100 to 200 grams of carbs during this period. Add a little protein to the mix and your muscles can store even more fuel, and the protein also helps repair the muscle damage associated with strengthening them. The ratio of carbs to protein is four to one. You can find this ratio in recovery drinks like Accelerade, but real food can work just as well. In fact, chocolate milk comes close to the magic ratio for recovery and adds other vital nutrients.

I have read that you have until two hours post-workout to fuel your muscles with carbs and protein, but I have also read that you should start replenishing your muscles even before you hit the shower. You can always start off with a large banana immediately after your run plus eat
30 grams of carbs, and worry about refueling your muscles with the magic ratio after your shower.

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