When a friend of mine recommended chocolate milk as a long run recovery drink, I thought she was nuts! Chocolate milk??? Really? How could that be good after a long run?
Turns out, she was right.
I’m pretty sure we’re all aware of the fact that our muscles rely on carbs to keep them going. Running a long way obviously depletes those carbs, making it critical that we restore what we’ve lost. But carbs alone aren’t enough–we need amino acids to help replenish our carb stores and repair any damage we might’ve done doing something insane like running 18 miles. Those amino acids, found in protein, help to maintain muscle mass and aid in recovery.
Guess what? Chocolate milk has the perfect combination of amino-rich protein and carbs to help muscles recover after a long run! Oh, and it tastes pretty fantastic, too. 😀
Carbs turn to glycogen in the muscles for bursts of energy, giving the muscles something to metabolize during recovery. The amino acids in the protein help rebuild and repair any damage. It’s the perfect combination!
Studies even show that chocolate milk is even better than sports drinks at speeding up recovery time and actually increasing the time it takes for you to get fatigued during your next workout. It’s not surprising; it has double the protein and carbs of its regular milk and sports drink counterparts.
I can attest to the healing powers of chocolate milk, too. After the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad race in Miami, I drank this little gem.
While it’s not exactly chocolate milk, it’s essentially the same thing with a few extra goodies thrown in. And while I was still sore after the race, I felt instantly better after I drank it. No joke.
Plus, I don’t know about you, but after a long run, my appetite is pretty much nonexistent. Drinking I can handle. Eating not so much. Even though it’s probably not as good as say, a whole wheat bagel with peanut butter and banana, chocolate milk is a decent substitute. Better than nothing, right?
Do you drink chocolate milk after long runs? Would you want to?