When we just had a hard and intense workout, we already expect that we are going to be sore the next day and the feeling is just very uneasy. Every time we try to move a body part, it feels like, that particular area just wants to rip apart.
During our workout, muscles are stressed and damaged. Thus we are tearing the fibers apart to grow into a bigger and stronger tissue. It is essential to have a proper knowledge about what food to eat for our muscles to recover well. Our muscles will always find sources of energy to be able to function properly during our active training sessions.
We may not have the knowledge on the food we commonly see on the market these days, but I am telling you that those current selections are just what you need to recover.
What to Eat?
Protein Rich Food
- Any protein rich food whether it may be from an animal or plants is one of the leading sources for your muscles to recover quicker. I would suggest sticking to what is available around in the market. If for example, that chicken breast is highly available and cheaper than other sources, then I propose that you stick to it. For plant based, I recommend on taking Broccoli as it has a reasonable amount of protein.
- Protein displays an important role in repairing damaged muscle fibers as it is one of its primary functions in muscles recovery.
- Studies show that the amount (in grams) of protein we should intake should be .7 grams per body weight (in pounds).
- As I mentioned before, muscles are expected to have inflammation after pushing it to the limit in your exercise. Instinct would remind you to go for ibuprofen or other pain killers. Don't count on it all the time.
- Pineapples are one of the best anti-inflammatory food to eat. It has a chemical compound called, Bromelain. It is an extract from the stem of the pineapple, and it has been proven over the years to reduce swelling and inflammation.
- Blueberries have this phytonutrient called “quercetin” which is known to fight cancer and inflammation
Omega-3 Rich Food
- Omega-3 allows and improves blood flow through our muscles during a workout and even recovery.
- More often than not, the number one source where we can get our Omega-3 is from fish oil capsules. Numerous brands sell fish oils, and that is why people would rather get the supplement than obtaining it from whole food.
- Salmon has a high amount of Omega-3. Most of it lies on its skin, so don’t discard the skin.
- Flaxseed is another great source of Omega-3, and it also comes in supplement form just in case it is not abundant in your area.
Fast Digesting Carbs
- As mentioned earlier, our muscles have energy sources. During our workout, the muscles deplete the energy levels along the intense exercise we do.
- Our muscle's source of energy is glycogen and glucose. These can be obtained from carbohydrates since it is a source of energy.
- White starches are fast digesting carbohydrates. It is advised to consume it before and after a workout. You will have a quick boost of energy levels for your muscles to use so that you won't exhaust yourself quickly.
Potassium Rich Food
- Aside from being commonly known for regulating the heart function, Potassium keeps your muscles from cramping. It is a mineral that balances your body's fluids and electrolyte levels. It is one of the minerals that can keep your body rehydrated even after sweating aplenty.
- A common source of potassium is, of course, banana.
- Avocado is another excellent source of potassium just in case it is more abundant in your local market than a banana.
Multivitamins- take some multivitamins if it is tough for you to find the vitamins and minerals from food sources. It is just to aid the nutrients your body daily needs. Practically, some of our food sources could be pretty expensive, so it would be wise to purchase a bottle of it.
Rest and Recover – Even if you consume all of the foods mentioned above, but you don't stop and just keep on working out every single day, then you are not allowing your muscles to recover and grow.
Hydrate – Keep yourself hydrated at all times, especially during your workouts. Replace all the fluids you just sweat out as your muscles will need hydration after a long workout. I am not just talking about drinking 8-10 glasses of water a day, but sports drinks with electrolytes are an excellent fluid replacement.
At most times, we train very hard to get the muscle size and muscle mass that we want to achieve. Training is just one part of the process for it to grow. Remember to have a proper diet and nutrition for your muscles to recover well. It is not always about who works the hardest, but it is also matters who trains the smartest.
Gregory is the chief editor at ConstructMuscles.com. He spends half of my time on his blog while the other half on being a physical fitness trainer. Believing in the great benefits of bodybuilding and fitness to the body, he has been motivated to become a fitness enthusiast. Stay Connected with him on Twitter.