After a workout usually comes a feeling of lightness and satisfaction. Your body also produces endorphins, aka the “exhilaration hormone”. In this happy state, you become highly motivated, and thus addicted to your workout. We’ve got a few nutritional tips than can optimize this feeling, as well as help you recover afterwards.
Water, always water
You know it, but it bears repeating: to avoid the negative effects of dehydration, you need to drink water during your workout. Not only that, but in order to fight fatigue, cramps and muscle pain, you also need to drink water following your activity! You therefore eliminate toxins from your body and compensate for your loss of minerals caused by sweating.
Carefully choose your post-workout food
This expert tip may surprise you… Sports nutritionist and dietician Catherine Naulleau reveals that chocolate milk is great for energizing yourself after a workout. “The drink contains everything you need to recuperate: protein and carbohydrates. And since it’s a drink, your body will more quickly absorb it,” she explains.
Listen to your body
If you often don’t feel hungry after a workout, it’s due to conflicting signals in your body. This is explained by the fact that our nervous system is ruled by two distinct systems: the sympathetic and the parasympathetic. Whereas the former controls rest, the latter is geared towards digestion. Since these two don’t send the same signals, they don’t work together. So when working out intensely, your “rest” mode is activated, consequently alleviating feelings of hunger.
However, even if you aren’t hungry after a workout, it’s best to nibble on something, so as to avoid symptoms of hypoglycemia. Don’t be fooled into thinking you’re full when you’re not!
Reconcile with starchy foods
A while later, during the meal that follows your workout, you must always think about recuperating. So as to refuel your system with carbs, as well as help your muscles recover, opt for starches. Pasta, rice, potatoes and bread are your best allies. Naulleau reveals: “Not only do they produce energy, but carbohydrates are also rich in vitamin B. This nutrient is essential for the proper function of the brain. And your brain plays a large role when it comes to your emotions, such as your well-being.”
And there you have it: reaching seventh heaven after a stint at the gym has never been easier!