After running a Half Marathon you should first replace the fuel you used, and that’s mainly carbohydrates—that’s primarily what the body uses as its fuel source at an event like that. Most of us first reach for water at the finish line but we drunk enough water during the race.
I normally have a Chocolate bar and an energy drink in my bag, and the first thing I do after crossing the finish line is, pick up my bag, chew the Chocolate bar and drink the energy drink. These are not real carbohydrates but sources of energy that restores my energy levels before I move to the next stage of recovery.
Not all carbohydrates are equal. White Bread is a carbohydrate but it is low on nutrients. In fact, one piece of banana is better than eating half a loaf.
List of quality carbohydrates that should be in every runners diet.
Whole Grain Cereal
Whole Wheat Bread
Protein & Fat
The body also use fat and protein during a grueling half marathon. It is also a good Idea your post race meal to include some small amount of protein as well, and that’s going to help the body recover from that long duration work.
Some Quality Protein that every runner should eat
The rule of thumb is that the ratio of Carbohydrates to protein should be 4:1
Another awesome drink am planning to include in post race refueling drink is Flavored milks; many runners swear chocolate milk in particular is a great refueling source.
Forget Gatorade sports drinks, the best sports drink to have after a running workout or hard race is chocolate milk, studies say.
In a University of Texas at Austin study, athletes who drank low-fat chocolate milk after a hard work out (as opposed to those who drank sports beverages with just carbohydrates) developed more muscle and less fat, as well as improved workout times. Another study published in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found cyclists who drank chocolate milk had twice the maximal oxygen uptake (the most amount of oxygen an individual can use during intense exercise, an indicator of your cardiovascular fitness) as those who drank calorie-free beverages or carbohydrate sports drinks.
So, in the 30-minute recovery window after running, have a nice cold drink of low-fat chocolate milk to boost your performance and overall physical shape.
After a run it is recommended to drink a recovery drink to replenish lost energy, fluid and electrolytes.
Water as running Recovery drink
The cheapest and most popular recovery drink is good old water. Water helps in restoring lost water through sweating and cooling down the body. Drinking water also helps in preparing the stomach for proper food digestion. Experts tend to agree that rehydrating with water until urine is pale yellow is the way to go.
Sports Energy Drinks
Drinkigng a sports energy drink with a mix of carbs, protein and sodium within an hour of finishing the race is crucial.
Carbohydrate Milk Drink
The chocolate milk has the magic 4:1 carbohydrate to protein ratio, is cheap and tastes good.