proper post-exercise nutrition, a post-workout smoothie & a semi-wiaw!

Morning my health nuts!

Are my greetings getting too ridiculous?? Be honest, please.

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Before I get too into my post, I just wanted to call attention to 3 things!

  1. I have started a Recipage located here. You’ll also find a link on my Recipes page and sidebar. Basically it’s searchable database of all my recipes that are categorized by ingredient, diet, cooking method and course. So please do check it out if you haven’t already!
  2. I finally started using Pinterest to it’s fullest potential. I had a personal account a while back but stopped using it, then I created one for my blog, but hadn’t been pinning that much. But now I am, and I make a much more interesting person to follow because of i t;) So feel free to follow me, I’d be honoured :). I’m also on twitter….just sayin’…Links are on my side bar—>
  3. I’m participating in Alex from Spoonful of Sugar Free‘s Sugar-Free Challenge! That means I won’t be eating any added sugar or sweetener for the next 10 days. All recipes posted here during the challenge will be completely sugar-free without added sweetener, including stevia! Although fruit is allowed so dates may make an appearance.
 
 

So instead of the usual “What I Ate Wednesday” this week, I thought I would instead post about my post-workout nutrition and some things I’ve been trying out! I think it totally fits in with the theme of “Sensible Snacking” Jenn has decided on for this month. It’s in your body’s best interest to fuel and “snack” properly when exercising and being sensible about it ensures your body recovers faster, can work harder and you’ll ultimately see greater improvements and be healthier!

So this is…

What I Ate Wednesday: Post-Workout Sensible Snacking!

Since I’ve stopped focusing so much on the calories-in/calories-out balance that seems to be a huge focus of health and weight loss these days, eating following exercise has been a no-brainer. You’re tired, legs feel like jelly and are just a little sweaty. Cold refreshing water and some re-energizing eats are top on my priority list. I didn’t put much thought into what I was eating until recently and it seriously has made a huge impact! I don’t get nearly as sore the next day and my muscles don’t feel super tired for the rest of the day. Most simply put- I bounce back from my workouts better thus improving all subsequent workouts. Sweet!

Post-Workout Re-Fuelling

Some key things to consider about your post-workout snack/meal:

  1. Following exercise your body has trouble digesting due to lack of energy, so a smoothie is a good option- your blender has done some of the work for you. This also means that less blood and energy will have to be diverted to your stomach meaning more can be put into recovering from exercise (clearing lactic acid from the blood, removing other wastes, delivering nutrients, etc.)
  2. The meal should be a good balance of easily-digestible protein, omega-3 fatty acids, simple and complex carbohydrates and lots of vitamins and minerals. These all work synergistically to help restore glycogen stores (the muscles storage of glucose for fuel), repair soft-tissue damage and rehydrate the body.
  3. Choose alkalizing foods. The body produces lactic acid during exercise so eating acid containing foods will reduce the body’s ability deal with it and this leads to muscle stiffness and pain. It also creates fatigue! Acidic foods will also create nutritional stress which will divert energy from the exercise recovery process. I talked about this here.
  4. Should be within 1 hour of exercising.

Now onto the food!

First here are some products I’ve recently tried and loved for post-workout nutrition!

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This is something I’ve been using a bit and I am really loving it. It’s Vega’s Recovery Accelerator. According to Vega this product “features a 4:1 ratio of carbohydrates to protein, a combination shown to increase muscle glycogen re-synthesis—a crucial component of post-workout recovery.” It also contains ingredients that work synergistically together to reduce recovery time and support the body in repairing tissue, reducing inflammation and replenish electrolytes. It doesn’t have a high protein content so it meant for immediately following exercise, followed by a higher protein meal or snack. Guys, this stuff is awesome, I notice a huge different when I use it. Unfortunately though it’s a little pricey so I don’t think I’ll buy it all the time. If you see it though, definitely try it out!

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This is a North Coast Natural’s Raw Hemp Smoothie Powder in Chocolate. I got a sample of it when I ordered some other food items and loved the look of the nutrition stats!

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I don’t know if you can read that but there’s hemp protein, a whole food fibre complex, spirulina, chia seeds, sprouted broccoli and probiotics. This blended up with a banana, frozen raspberries and some coconut water (for electrolytes) or just water made for a really quick, easy and delicious recovery smoothie that is easily digestible and packed with protein, omega 3’s carbohydrates and electrolytes. It is definitely one of the best hemp-centered protein powders I’ve tried. It’s gluten-free too! That being said, I like to play around with my own flavours and ingredients in smoothies and this powder’s flavour is over-powering and doesn’t allow for hand selected ingredients to create a performance-enhancing smoothie. I mean you could add your own stuff in a long with the powder, but then it’s just getting complicated which defeats the purpose of a smoothie mix right?

Now for a recipe!

Because I want to rely on post-workout fuel that focuses on things that are in my pantry (and are a little more economically friendly) I focused on the criteria listed above and created a delicious, super-recovery smoothie that is both refreshing, satiating, alkalizing and delicious!

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The ingredients I included are: Sunwarrior Vanilla Protein Powder (or hemp seeds), coconut water, chia seeds, banana, goji berries, maca powder, spinach and spirulina.

You might notice some of these are similar to ingredients in the pre-workout snack I discussed the other day, but that’s because they are awesome :)

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  • Sunwarrior Protein Powder/hemp seeds: easily digestible raw protein that’s easy for your body to break down and aids in muscle repair
  • Coconut water: full of electrolytes to help replenish your body
  • Banana: simple and complex carbohydrates and electrolytes
  • Goji berries (from last post): contain polysaccharides called lycium barbarum which are very effective detoxifiers and reduce inflammation in the body.. The help remove lactic acid created by our muscles during exercise and help the body adapt to stress. . Goji berries also have sesquiterpenoids which stimulate production of Human Growth Hormone, which helps build muscle!
  • Maca (from last post): provides energy and promotes quick regeneration of fatigues muscle tissue and the adrenal glands. Therefore it will help muscles recover and improve strength!
  • Spinach: high in chlorophyll which is an anti-inflammatory and aids in blood cleansing
  • Spirulina: Rich in antioxidants to help eliminate free radicals (oxidants) produced during exercise. It’s high in vitamin A which is important for cell and tissue renewal (building muscle), high in the B vitamins which is important for glycogen storage (replenishes muscles’ stores of glucose which is important for the next workout), high in iron and B12 which is important for oxygen delivery and high in minerals like calcium, magnesium and sodium which are involved in muscle contraction and overall function
  • You’ll also notice this is a blended meal which allows more of the body’s energy to be diverted to recovering!

And now for the recipe!

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Post-Workout Recovery Smoothie (Vegan, Gluten-free, Sugar-free, Raw)

This smoothie has a great balance of protein, omega-3s and carbs and is packed full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and electrolytes. The banana and goji berries give it a great flavour and the coconut water adds sweetness without any added sugar. Drink after a workout for an easily-digestible post-workout meal!

Makes 1 smoothie.

  • 1 banana, sliced and frozen
  • 1 cup coconut water (or water)
  • 1 large handful spinach
  • 1 tbsp goji berries, soaked (I get them soaking before my workout and they are soft by the time I’m done)
  • 1/2 scoop raw protein powder, OR your favourite protein powder (I use Sunwarrior Natural Warrior Blend) OR 2 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp maca powder
  • 1/2 tsp spirulina
  • a couple ice cubes if you like frostier smoothies

Blend it all up until smooth and enjoy!

This smoothie is widely variable too! Want a more fruity smoothie? Sub in some frozen berries for some or all of the banana. Change up the protein powder flavours or add in some nut butters. This smoothie is your canvas.

I’ve been drinking this, or variations of this smoothie like crazy lately. So how’s that for some serious “Sensible Post-Workout Snacking”?

That’s it for me today everyone! Have a lovely Wednesday!

I am submitting this post to Allergy-Free Wednesday and Wellness Weekends!

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56 thoughts on “proper post-exercise nutrition, a post-workout smoothie & a semi-wiaw!

  1. Pingback: Product Reviews: Coconut Yogurt, Workout Powders, and Antihistamine « veggiewhatnow

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  3. Pingback: Vega One Nutritional Supplement « The Cruelty-Free Review

  4. Mmm… that pudding looks so good! What a great idea! I like chia seeds too, but the pudding never worked too well for me! I will have to give this a try!

  5. Pingback: Raw Fruit and Nut Chocolate. | Gold Within

  6. North Coast Natural’s Raw Hemp Smoothie Powder in Chocolate- sounds amazing, I am going to have to check this out today!

    Thanks for all the pre and post workout eats tips – so helpful and a nice reminder!

  7. You are the smoothie/work out fuel QUEEN!!

    How do you know so much? Awesome tips, Gabby…. plus that smoothie sounds incredible. I really need to get a blender don’t I? I have a food processor, but it doesn’t really cut the mustard when it comes to smoothies…. oh Vita Mix I dream of you ……

    • Hahah a little research + a Kinesiology degree help a little ;)

      I love my little magic bullet blender. Just invest in a personal one- less space and less money! See how you like it- you can always upgrade :) I too dream of a Vita Mix…one day we will be part of the exclusive club and be whipping up crazy concoctions I am sure of it!

  8. I love the idea of coconut water in smoothies but, unfortunately, I simply can’t find it here; only sweetened/treated cans of coconut water that aren’t quite what you’re talking about here! One day…

    • That sucks! Hopefully Lou’s suggestion will have you guzzling coconut water in no time! I love coconut water but definitely not necessary. Just a fun little extra ;) My dad has been buying me a lot of it so I’m indulging while I can!

  9. Love the smoothie recipe! I’ve become obsessed with smoothies this summer and I’m embracing every second of it. I might have to try some of the protein powder – I work out a ton and have been looking for a great post workout protein supplement. Thanks for all of the helpful advice!

  10. Oooh thanks for this post! You have provided so much amazing information! And the smoothie recipe! I’m excited, I need to invest in some superfoods so I can make the energy bites and the smoothies :) I’ve tried the Vega Recovery Accelerator and liked it, but I find it incredibly sweet. I still have a few packets and need to use them, but I need to dilute them more I think.

    I loved your greeting! Very cute and not annoying at all! Don’t you just love Pinterest? I’m totally hooked. I feel more inspired than I’ve felt in a very long time thanks to Pinterest and bloggers like you!

    Thanks for the tips! :)

    • You’re right they are really sweet- I definitely mix it with more water than the 1 cup recommended. I find a lot Vega stuff to be that way for me, so I just use less/add more liquid lol. I only had a tiny packet of lucuma and it’s almost gone- that will be a sad day!

      Haha I’m so glad I’m not coming off as annoying! I just try and be myself as much as possible but would hate to push the limits too far. So thanks for your reassurance :) I looove Pinterest. I am finally following you (I suck, sorry it took me so long) but it’s just so visually awesome! I focused a lot on fashion last time I used it but I’m trying not to this time- I ended up buying too much stuff lol.

      I know what you mean about inspiration. I would need a lifetime to create and do all the things I want to already thanks to all you lovely people :)

      Hope your workouts are supercharged and that the new schedule is going well!

  11. welcome to pinterest! The recipage looks great.. my problem with it is that you cant search by multiple tags, like vegan, glutenfree and nutfree.

    There is so much great info on this and the previous post. i’d love to try this smoothie, esp for hubbs who does a proper workout unlike me. I interviewed Brendan a while back and have been meaning to try out Vega since then and finally ordered some last week. lets see how it works out for us.

    • That’s very true- would be a lot handier if you could search for more than one tag. But at least you can search one rather than none like my recipe page on my blog lol

      Thanks, I’m glad you liked the post! I really enjoy the Vega products I’ve tried especially when it comes to improving my workouts. I hope you like them too!

  12. I love the photo of the vega juice in the Sam Adams glass. When I first saw it, I was like, “uh… What?” Gave me a good giggle!

    That smoothie sounds delicious- It totally makes for a super-charged, yet mouth-watering post-workout reward (or recovery drink). :-) Hope you’re having a great day!

    • Haha thanks. I was wondering if people would notice that :) I thought it was funny so I’m glad you did too!

      It’s a great reward you’re right- delicious, cold and refreshing. I have been making it everyday for a couple weeks and just don’t get sick of it!

  13. Great post Gabby! i absolutely love your greetings — they always make me smile:) and what a great idea to put goji berries in your smoothies! i’ve never heard of that before! i bet its great! hope you have a fabulous wednesday!

    • Aww thanks Caralyn :)

      I must admit I don’t really like goji berries but I like to blend them into things to get the benefits. I think its the texture I don’t like lol. I hope you like them in your smoothies!

      Have a lovely day :)

  14. I’ve tried maca in the past, but it always makes me feel bad :o( I had a friend who thrived off the stuff though! I just started up with pinterest and twitter too, so I’ll definitely have to check out yours!

    • Aww that sucks! I found it took me a while to get used to, but now I use it all the time. Have you tried only having a tiny bit then gradually increasing?

      I’m loving pinterest right now :) its so much fun and has loads of good ideas!

  15. 1. love the use of the Sam Adams glass; 2. love that you started pinterest to its fullest potential – I have been wanting to start but haven’t had the time, but maybe this will give me encouragement I need; and 3. love the post title today! :)

    • Haha thanks! I love that glass but don’t drink beer super often- so I use it for my healthy concoctions- its a great size!

      I love Pinterest. I used to use it a ton then just randomly stopped. Now I am loving it! It’s just so pretty ;)

      Thanks! I love naming my posts. Usualluy I’m lazy about it but when I have the time I put in a little more effort. Thanks for noticing :)

  16. How do you like Warrior Blend protein powder. I’m experimenting right now trying to find a new plant based protein powder and WB is on my list to try. I love Vega recovery. The Tropical is like a treat!

    I have at least one green smoothie almost every day of the week.

    I just ran my first ultra and loved it so I’ve been researching post-workout nutrition like crazy. My goal is fueling to run farther than ever before :)

    [Fitness, Health and Happiness]

    • I love the warrior blend- I digest it the best out of any powder I’ve tried and it has MCTs in it as well which I love! It tastes good too and has a pretty goo texture!

      I think I’ll splurge soon and get a tub of the tropical recovery- it tastes like juice but it so good for you!

  17. Looks great! I usually work out in the morning, so I eat half a grapefruit before I leave, work out and then eat my real breakfast as my “recovery” snack… My breakfast is usually pretty similar to your smoothie: steel-cut oats with 1 scoop of Vega with some fruit. I always tend to over dilute my oats since there is thickener in the powder, so it ends up being a drink-like-thing. I have always wondered what it would taste like if I blended it… but then I think about having to clean the blender and change my mind. ;)

    Can’t wait to see all your sugar-free eats for the next 10 days. At least fruit is still fare game! :)

    • Ooh I’ve never tried oats with Vega in them before, I’m intrigued! Sounds like an awesome breakfast!

      I’ve put oats in my smoothies before but I’ve never tried blending my oatmeal. Maybe an immersion blender- less clean up ;)

      • Great idea for the immersion blender, actually! I usually make a pot of oatmeal and then portion them out in Mason jars… which would be a great place to stick in the immersion blender. I hope it fits. I will have to see. :)

    • Thanks :) I’m really excited! I am already loving the challenge of putting together savoury snacks. We dont have a lot of fruit in the house so I’ve been getting creative.

      Awesome, I’ll get you on there too!

  18. haha i am a green smoothie addict and this post could have been written by me! my favourite combo is banana, pear, sunwarrior or hemp protein, dash of almond milk or soy yoghurt, some gojis, lemon zest and a squeeze of lemon for good measure, ice cubes!! yum!! i am in love with green juices at the moment too and since its so hot my body craves after so much fresh crispy salads!

    • Your smoothie sounds delicious! I’ll have to try that combo soon :)

      I know what you mean, my body is craving hydrating foods right now. I have been having 2 smoothies a day lately! I wish I had a juicer so I could have juices. Oh well I will make do ;)

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