If there’s one activity that really works up an appetite, it’s a solid workout. If you find yourself feeling particularly ravenous after breaking a sweat, it can be seriously tempting to reach for the nearest snack in sight- no matter how unhealthy it may be. Choosing the wrong post-workout snack can essentially undo all of your hard work, taking you right back to square one.
The trick to choosing the best post-workout snack is to understand what your body needs after exercise. The right post-workout snack doesn’t have to be difficult to concoct- the perfect post-workout snack can be as convenient as it is good for you. Understanding what you need to refuel after a workout will help you deliver your body with the right vitamins and nutrients to ensure your workout wasn’t in vain, your body continues to function and perform at its best, fatigue is combatted and any overworked muscles are swiftly repaired.
What does your body need after a workout?
Exercise can break down our muscle protein, so it’s important to consume protein post-workout to repair and rebuild those proteins as well as to build new muscle tissue. Potassium is another key mineral for restoring muscular energy.
Carbohydrates are of equal importance, as your body converts carbs into energy, which is stored within your muscles. A carb-rich snack post-workout will work to replace any of that all-important energy, meaning you can recover faster and won’t feel as fatigued- physically and mentally.
While not technically a post-workout snack, it’s super important to rehydrate after any workout too. We lose fluids as we sweat, so staying hydrated with water will allow you to replace those fluids to avoid dehydration (which can lead to serious health complications).
What snacks should you avoid post-workout?
Avoid anything rich in saturated fats and oils after a workout, as these fats slow down digestion and only add to the amount of fat your body is storing. It’s also a good idea to avoid anything overly sugary like milk chocolate, sweet pastries and sugary drinks as these also slow down metabolism.
The best post-workout snack ideas
Smashed avo on toast
While saturated fats are a post-workout no go, the good fats found in avocado make for an ideal post exercise treat as they work to heal tired muscles and joints. Try mashing some chilli flakes into your smash to kick your metabolism into gear! Having your avocado on toast is a great idea as avocado will help you to metabolise the carbohydrates in the bread, but consider choosing a gluten-free, fibre-rich option to ensure you’re filling your body with the fibre and protein that are actually removed from white bread.
Stamina State Chibbs
A convenient post-workout snack that requires zero meal prep is always a winner. Our Chibbs puffed chickpeas are nut free, dairy free, gluten free and vegan, plus they’ve been specifically created to sustain your energy levels. Chickpeas are a potent source of both protein and healthy carbohydrates making them the perfect snack for muscle repair.
Our Lightly Salted Chibbs also contain Himalayan salt, which is essential for restoring the electrolytes lost through sweat.
Hummus and crackers
Given how great chickpeas are for post-workout muscle recovery, it would be remiss of us not to include hummus on this list. Rice crackers topped with hummus are a double whammy- chickpeas for protein and carbohydrates and rice crackers for extra carbohydrates that help the body digest the protein faster.
Another snack that requires no preparation is the humble banana. Bananas are rich in potassium, carbohydrates and magnesium– all of which require restoring after even the most gentle workout.
Where many associate carbohydrates with bread and pastries, you’re far better off choosing a gluten-free carb source post-workout. Starchy carbs, like rice, corn and potatoes, contain a specific complex carb called “maltodextrin” which helps the body digest protein without the potential for fat gain.
There’s a reason why the stereotypical gym junkie is always pictured with a protein shake in hand! Protein is key post-workout, but not all proteins are made equally. Whey protein contains amino acids to aid with muscle recovery and is absorbed into the bloodstream far quicker than the alternatives, speeding up the overall recovery process. Vegan alternatives, such as pea protein, also make a great post-workout snack.
Quinoa and berries
Another great alternative to refined carbohydrates, quinoa is gluten free and rich in complex carbohydrates as well as fibre and protein. A quinoa and berry bowl makes for a delicious and healthy post-workout snack.
Looking for a great, quick post-workout snack? Shop our range of Chibbs now.