We love real food. We love to cook. If we could cook every day, after every ride, we would. Studies have shown consuming 1g of carbohydrate per kilo of body weight within 40-minutes does wonders for recovery. So when you can't cook, and you don't have mom and dad serving you up nutrient-rich foods, and you don't yet have that personal chef to perfectly plan your every meal, here are some fast and easy options to help you out. Now you'll never have to choose between getting in that much needed workout, and staying on top of your nutritional needs:
Yes, the college kid favorite. A pack of Ramen has 340 calories - you may need 1-2 packs depending on your workout. Ramen has a good dose of available carbs to aid recovery. Plus they are super rich in sodium. So after a hard workout, ramen does wonders to replenish electrolyte deficiencies.
2. Peanut Butter, Banana & Honey Sandwich:
This tastes great and on and off the bike. Wrap it up in tinfoil, and shove it in your jersey pocket and it will taste amazing and fuel a long ride. Eat it afterwards and the fat and protein from the peanut butter slows the absorption of the fast acting carbs in the banana, honey and bread. If you can, use a spelt or low carb/high fiber bread to keep you fuller even longer while the vitamins and nutrients in the banana will aid with recovery.
3. Couscous with Chicken:
Add some pre-grilled chicken to a box of quick cooking couscous is the perfect balance of cabs and proteins to refill glycogen stores and rebuild muscles. The nutrient rich properties of couscous are great to reduce post-training inflammation.
4. Fluid Smoothies:
Exercise can often act as an appetite suppressant, so if you're finding it hard to stomach a meal after a workout, a smoothie can be an appetizing way to get important nutrients to your muscles and aid recovery. Here is one of our favorite recipes
5. Low Fat Greek Yogurt:
Greek yogurt has 18-22g of protein in it, and little or no fat. It gives you more bang for your caloric buck than any other food. Stick to the plain flavors and add your own berries and nuts to get a richer source of carbs, anti-oxidants and healthy fats than the flavored yogurts, which mainly are only a source of sugar. Plus, because of the process in which it's made Greek yogurt often has the lactose removed, making it a viable option for the lactose intolerant.