Regeneration and recovery after a race is equally important as the race itself. The supercompensation theory suggests that after strenuous, high-intensity activity, with adequate rest and regeneration, the body bounces back even stronger than before, adjusting itself so you can handle more stress and train at an even higher level. Nutrition plays a critical role in this recovery process and is said to be one of the most powerful wellness factors within your control.
Your recovery after a skyrace involves an array of processes that are dependent on the provision of some specific nutrients. The quantity of nutrients is important but the timing of these is essential. In most of the cases, the stimulus for recovery is strongest in the period immediately after exercise and if your post-race meal is missing some macro and micronutrients at this time, you may consider your training/competition incomplete.
If you feel as though you’re not recovering well or maybe it’s an area you don’t usually focus on, here are some tips that will help you from the nutrition experts at PROZIS:
- Consume a high-quality protein source providing ~ 20-25 g of protein soon after the exercise session has finished.
- Plan a pattern of snacks and meals to suit energy needs and other nutritional goals and lifestyle needs that incorporates this optimal serving of protein every 3-5 hours.
- Consume a slow-release protein supplement before bed to prevent loss of muscle mass overnight.
- Consume rapidly digested protein sources (liquid based, high in whey) that are particularly suitable for a post-exercise protein boost include:
- Get your dose of CHO (carbohydrates) soon after the session finishes. Aim for a recovery snack/meal providing CHO equal to ~ 1 g per kg body weight (e.g. ~ 50 g for 50 kg female, 70 g for 70 kg male).
- Continue with more snacks, drinks, or meals to achieve a CHO target of 1g/kg per hour for the first 4 hours of recovery, then, resume an eating pattern that meets overall fuel and energy goals.
- Try tart Cherry: a new supplement for muscle recovery. Its high content of antioxidants has yielded significant results in decreasing inflammation, oxidative stress and muscle pain. Still, post-workout inflammation is a necessary process to trigger positive adaptations to training, and a high intake of antioxidants during all season is not recommended (the same applies to multivitamin supplements with high doses of vitamin C, E, carotenes, and selenium). You’ll find that 1 tablet with 480 mg of Tart Cherry after training in specific phases of the season, may boost recovery.
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