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.
Quercetin is an energy boosting supplement that was made famous by FRS Energy drink. The energy boosting drink was endorsed by Lance Armstrong and everyone in cycling and running community became curious on what was inside.
One of the ingredients inside FRS Energy drink is Quercetin. In a lab study, Quercetin was been shown to increase energy expenditure in rat which made some people to suspect it might have a similar effect on humans. Although FRS claims it works, many people disagree but some swear by it.
If you believe in it or want to give it a try, you can get it naturally or take the supplement.
To get more quercetin you can increase your intake of the following foods that are thought to have quercetin: –
Leafy green vegetables
Herbs such as ginkgo and St. John’s wort
One advantage of buying a supplement is ; Quercetin is available in higher amounts in dietary supplements than would typically be found in food sources. I guess you would need to eat a basket of Apples just to get the same amount of quercetin in a tablet.
Supplements are sold as capsules or tablets or in drink form like in the case of FRS energy drink.
A word of caution, before taking any supplement consult with your doctor.
I was surfing around the internet when I found this interesting piece on cbs news
During a 2004 Summer Olympics awash in controversies over steroids and supplements, one sportswriter wryly noticed that top American swimmer Michael Phelps was playing it safe — he preferred to drink Carnation Instant Breakfast between races.
I wondered whether Carnation Instant Breakfast supplement had any special ingredient that made Phelp’s swimmer faster than competition.
One fact about Carnation Instant breakfast is that it contains key nutrients, such as calcium and vitamin D, in quantities that sports drinks like gatorade can’t match.
The carnation instant breakfast also contains alot of calories, it adds 130 calories to a single glass of milk.
All this benefits of carnation instant breakfast helps to hasten recovery.
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.