Muscle recovery is a largely underestimated and talked about subject amongst youth athletes. The expectation of training hard and multiple weekly hours is there, as is the expectation of 100% effort and staying injury free. But what we don’t focus on very often is HOW to maintain and surpass peak efforts and healthy strong muscles.
Every time we ask our athletes to train, we are essentially breaking down their muscles. Preparing for practice through proper nutrition, including higher carbohydrate and readily available sugars is key ahead of time, but afterwards what should we be asking our athletes to do?
Keys to recovery:
- Stretching and facial rolling
Nutrition after training sessions should consist of BCAA’s (branch chained amino acids), 200-350 calories (a combination of both protein and carbohydrates). As a general guideline, protein should be between 18-25g and carbohydrates between 40-60g. Try this out post-training …
Berry Fibre Crunch Smoothie
(Courtesy the Canadian Sports Institute)
2 tbsp All Bran Cereal
1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
1/2 cup frozen mixed berries
4 tbsp skim milk powder
1/2 cup skim milk
Nutrition per serving: 310 calories, 50g carbs (8g fibre), 25g protein, 1g fat
Meanwhile, Isagenix is a product and company that I fully support. I have seen some amazing results and successes with Isagenix supplements. Their ‘Amped Recovery’ is a post-workout recovery drink that is chalked full of BCAA’s and is recommended for older athletes and adults. IsaLean Shakes, however, are perfect for our youth athletes on the run. Easy to shake and go … just mix with water! 240 calories, 25-36g protein and 24 grams of carbs. Add a banana to top up your carbohydrates on especially heavy training days.
Timing is also key. Make sure to get your smoothie in within the hour post-training for the best muscle recovery results!