In the first part of this post, we talked about some options for eating before derby practice – but what about after practice is done? How can you make sure that you’re eating the right things after all of your hard work?
When you put a little bit of thought into it, post-practice nutrition can help you to recover, it can build muscle (and repair muscle damage) and can improve your future performance.
Long story short, training nutrition mirrors itself – treat your recovery meal much like you did your prep meal. Eat lean protein, high quality carbs, fruits and veggies, and healthy fats in some capacity in the 2ish hour window before training, and then again in the 2ish hour window following training. If your pre-training meal was small (or you were training fasted), make sure to eat sooner post-training. If it was-regular sized, you don’t need to rush (but try to stay inside that 2-hour window if possible).
There`s no evidence that protein powders are any better for you than whole food proteins after training, so feel free to skip the shake if you have the time to prepare whole foods. On that note, minimally processed carbs and fruit (from whole food sources) are likely a better fuel choice that processed ones. While the post-practice focus is usually on carbs and lean protein, healthy fats have not been shown to impede the benefits of the other macronutrients, and might bring some benefits of their own to your post-training meal.
What does that mean in terms of actual food?
If you’re in a rush, or have a long drive home after practice, make a protein shake with fruit that you can drink after practice. If you’re not into liquid nutrition, make up a some tupperware containers – one with fruit and one with veggies and hummus (or nut butter).
THE MOST SIMPLE HUMMUS RECIPE EVER
- 400g cans of chickpeas (save some of the lqiuid)
- 2 tsp tahini
- 1 garlic cloves, crushed
- dash crushed sea salt
- 3 tbsp quality extra virgin olive oil (plus extra for drizzling)
- 1 1/2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Paprika (optional)
- Coriander or parsley (optional)
Rinse chickpeas, process. Add tahini, garlic, salt, lemon juice and 5-7 tablespoons of the saved chickpea liquid. When the mixture is smooth, top with a bit of oil, paprika, coriander or parsley.
Another easy post-practice snack is hardboiled eggs – pre-make ’em, and bring them along – alternately, egg muffins that you pre-make are a great choice. Match them with dried fruits and nuts for carbs and healthy fat.
You can also cook a meal, if you’ve got the time – a palm-sized chicken breast and brown rice/sweet potato will give you the carbs and protein your body is looking for. Add leafy greens at will!
If you find you have a sweet tooth after practice, never fear! You can still indulge, and adequately refuel by making chia pudding – high in protein, fiber, fiber, omegas, potassium, and magnesium – add some fruit on top for an extra carb boost!
EASY CHIA PUDDING
- 1.5tbsp chia
- 1/2c almond milk
- 1 scoop protein powder (I like chocolate)
- Fruit and spice to top
This is great for practice days, because you can just put the chia in the almond milk (or water or whatever beverage you please), leave it to gel while you practice (at least an hour), mix in the protein powder once it’s set, top and enjoy!
(Chia pudding photo for this post via dailyburn.com, by the way!)
What do you eat post-practice that fuels your body and soul? Tell us in the comments. Or you can tell us about your guilty pleasures instead :)