Why it Works: “Often after a work out I feel less like eating, but more like drinking,” says Ironman champion, Craig Alexander. That’s not surprising. A buildup of acids in your body after intense workouts will often cause loss of appetite, and sometimes even cause nausea. Nonetheless, it’s important to get carbs and protein into your body within 30 to 45 minutes of finishing your workout in order to deliver your muscles the nutrients they need to repair themselves. Alexander’s smoothie recipe is light enough to stomach, and also packs the protein (milk, protein powder, chia, and nuts), carbs (honey, banana, berries, and wheat germ) and anti-oxidants (thanks to the berries) you need to recover properly. The cold shake also helps bring down your core body temperature, helping to reduce inflammation throughout your body, a key step on the way to recovery.
The Recipe: Craig Alexander’s Recovery Smoothie
Add to a blender:
One cup of milk
Half a cup of frozen or fresh berries
One frozen or fresh banana (frozen gives it a better creamier texture and helps with internal cooling after a big session where the body temp is raised)
A teaspoon of honey
A dash of cinnamon
A handful of almonds or cashews
One scoop of Body Science chocolate or vanilla protein powder ($73)
A quarter cup of chia seeds
A quarter cup of wheat germ
Blend and drink.