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PHOTO NUTRITION Endurance Sport, the Importance of Recovery Nutrition

Nutrition in post-exercise (beyond 2 hours) is as crucial as the one that is introduced into the body before or during the exercise.

A very interesting aspect of long distance preparation, whether in water or triathlon, is the talk of nutrition. We have already dealt with several post topics regarding what to eat, when to eat and why to eat certain foods rather than others.

In this article, we will deepen the discourse about the importance of recovery power.

We start from a fundamental assumption: feeding in post-exercise (beyond 2 hours) is as crucial as the one introduced to the body before or during the effort.

Let's see why:

1. First of all, "recovery meal" means a consumed food ration within about 30 minutes of the end of a workout or race and is of crucial importance to restore muscle energy reserves, prevent trauma, and encourage training adaptation. The recovery meal must contain both carbohydrates and proteins.

2. Second, the recovery meal, if done within the window of 30 minutes from the end of the effort itself, will have no impact on your weight. This is because it rebalances the calorie consumption consumed during prolonged effort. What to eat?

  • As for carbohydrates, it is preferable to consume quick-absorbing sugars, contained in moderately high glycemic index foods (white rice or white rice or white bread, jam, fruit and juices);
  • Muscle repair and adaptation are guaranteed by high-quality proteins: 10 g of protein are enough to stimulate protein synthesis, but the effect is maximized with 20 g of protein: the optimal strategy is to organize training sessions so as to make them follow from a main meal to take on the ideal quantities.

3. Third, the post-exercise / contest meal favors the reduction of muscle inflammation and improves recovery in view of subsequent workouts. As already mentioned above, a balanced meal of carbohydrates and proteins or a ready-to-drink beverage can attenuate cortisol levels (an element that produces muscle inflammation) for better muscle recovery.

The advice I give you is four:

  1. Learn to make your recovery meal a routine. Organized in such a way that immediately after your workout or race you are able to enter into your body a balanced recovery meal or alternatively ready recovery drinks.
  2. Do not underestimate the effect of the recovery meal. Almost certainly you are not a professional athlete who can afford hours of rest after intense workouts, so you have to learn to manage your energies and your body at best. A simple meal can make the difference between a good or a bad training the day after a challenging workout.
  3. In the recovery you can not overlook the rehydration : you typically have to drink a volume approximately equal to 125-150% of the fluids lost during training, which means that if you lose 1 kg we need to introduce about 1.25-1.5L of fluid during hours after training.
  4. Avoid do-it-yourself. There are already prepared drinks; You read what and how to eat, okay. But unless you are a nutritionist, you can not know how your body responds to certain stresses, or how much heat you consume after certain workouts. So, before embarking on the road of endurance, talk about your goals to a nutritionist and, hand-held training tables, together with a food program tailored to your needs.


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