Nutrition To Optimize Recovery & Performance
How often you move your body is important. However, when and what you feed it after the movement can be just as, if not more critical.
When we work out intensely, whether that be in the gym hitting a new deadlift PR, holding an asana for a long period of time, and even making a new mile time on the trail, the nutrition following your workout has a great effect on how quickly you recover.
The Link Between Nutrition and Recovery and Performance:
It’s no surprise that post-workout nutrition is an intriguing topic among many fitness fanatics and gym goers. Quality nutrition is what ultimately makes us stronger, leaner, more fit, and more muscular, but in the short term requires a lot of focus on the upkeep and repair.
The actual repair and building occurs through the breakdown of old, damaged proteins (aka protein breakdown) and the construction of new ones (aka protein synthesis) – a process known collectively as protein turnover.
Studies show that this process can be reversed. Specifically, protein synthesis is stimulated and protein breakdown is suppressed when you consume the right type of nutrients after exercise.
Research has found that the body deals with nutrients differently at different times, depending on the activity. What you consume before, during, and especially after your workout has an impact on how you perform. By consuming particular nutrients after your workouts (aka post-workout nutrition), you can improve your body composition, performance, and overall recovery.
Generally, post-workout nutrition has three specific purposes:
- Replenish glycogen
- Decrease protein breakdown
- Increase protein synthesis
In other words, athletes/exercisers want to replenish their energy stores, increase muscle size and/or muscle quality, and repair any damage caused by the workout.
Your body needs much more than just that protein shake:
Setting aside what you’ve heard from your local gym bro, a chocolate protein shake will not cut it for optimizing your recovery.
Muscles need two main things to recover: protein, the raw material used to build muscle mass, and carbohydrates, which is stored as glycogen and serves as the muscles’ main source of energy during exercise.
The recommendations are also different depending on the type of training you do, your overall body composition, and current goals.
A 2012 review in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition concluded that to maximize muscle gain from strength training, “protein dosed at .4-.5 grams per kilogram of lean body mass at both pre and post exercise is a simple, relatively fail-safe general guideline….”
The same review also noted that “…someone with 70kg of LBM (about 155 pounds of lean mass/bodyweight) would consume roughly 28-35g protein in both the pre and post exercise meal to increase muscle mass and quicken recovery time”.
Now that you have a bit of the ‘why’, let’s move onto the ‘how’.
With the understanding of why you should be loading your system with nutrient dense carbs and quality sourced amino acids, you can begin to plan out your next meal to optimize your recovery with a CURED twist.
Fruit and Yogurt Parfait:
Yogurt with a serving of cinnamon covered berries creates a protein and probiotic packed source of goodness, topped with natural sugars to replenish your glycogen levels! Since this bowl is sprinkled with our classic Cinnamon Honey CBD infused spice, you will not only replenish your glycogen levels, but also providing your endocannabinoid system with a gentle boost of CBD!
-1.5 cup yogurt
-1 cup blackberries (or your choice of berries)
-1 serving of Cinnamon Honey Spice
Place all ingredients into a bowl, enjoy! Try freezing it halfway for an ice-cream-like TREAT.
Peanut Butter Pumpkin Puree Pancakes
This stack screams fall on a plate but is delicious any time of year! If your gluten-free, this will be your new go to meal. Loaded with vitamin-rich pumpkin, it provides your body with a low glycemic carbohydrate source to stabilize your blood sugar all morning long! As with the yogurt, this dish is topped with one of our sweet spices, Peanut Butter Chocolate. Since the spice line contains only traces amount of CBD, the microdose amount gives your body just enough ease for your muscle recovery to enhance over time.
-1/2 cup plant milk (think almond, cashew or coconut)
-1/4 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix – that’s loaded with processed sugar!)
-1/4 cup crunchy peanut butter + additional for topping
-2 tablespoon coconut oil
-1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
-1 serving Peanut Butter CBD Spice
-1 cup gluten free pancake mix
-100% pure maple syrup, for topping
-butter or ghee for coating griddle
-Coat griddle with butter and heat over medium
-whisk together milk, eggs pumpkin puree, peanut butter, coconut oil, and pumpkin pei spice
-stir in pancake mix until incorporated
-spoon batter onto giggle and cook until it bubbles on top and begin to form golden crest underneath; flip and cook until sides are golden brown
**these pancakes are thick and fluffy, so they may take a little longer to cook.
If you’re familiar with two of the latest wellness trends, you may have heard how tasty and wellness-enhancing these two plant allies are: cacao and adaptogens. Adaptogens are redefining sleep, stress, and recovery! The adaptogen used in this recipe is one of the most common roots used;Aashwagandha. A review published in the African Journal of Traditional, Contemporary, and Alternative Medicines found that consuming Ashwagandha can modify cortisol levels, and may aid in recovery!
-1 c. Oat Milk
-1 banana (try it frozen for a chilly treat)
-1 serving plant based protein powder
-1 tablespoon cacao powder
-1 teaspoon Ashwagandha
-1 serving of Full Spectrum Raw Oil
Toss everything in your favorite blender and sip!