Friday, May 9, 2014

Recovery Tools: Got Chocolate Milk?

When I was offered the chance to try out chocolate milk as a recovery tool as a Women's Health Action Hero, I jumped at the chance. I'm sure you know by now that I have a huge sweet tooth so being asked to drink chocolate milk post-workout was such a treat! Personally I have switched over to almondmilk because I limit dairy due to my tummy troubles, so it had been a while since I've had some real low-fat chocolate milk. 

Some goodies and information about chocolate milk from WH 

Anyways let's be honest, after some swigs of water lately my post-race beverage of choice is a cold beer. 




After the Rock and Roll National half marathon in March I actually drank some chocolate milk I was handed right after the race  before I downed my bottle of water and was reminded how great of a recovery tool it was, before I even started this assignment! I've been having an 8 ounce glass (let's be honest, probably a little bit more!) of chocolate milk immediately after some runs and workouts. 

 I usually look for something I can quickly eat after a workout within the 20 minute recommended time-frame so I love having some chocolate milk in the refrigerator ready to go. It's also great because it's portable! Many times I don't have the tools or the time to blend up a protein shake so having a post-workout beverage handy right away that has carbs, protein, and electrolytes to start repairing my muscles immediately is great!  Since starting to use chocolate milk as a recovery beverage after my half marathon training runs, I've noticed I've been less sore and more ready to attack my next workout!

Lowfat chocolate milk is a natural source of protein, the right mix of protein and carbs, and provides fluids and electrolytes.  



We need protein post-workout to help build lean muscle and the correct carb:protein ratio to rebuild fatigued muscles. Chocolate milk is also packed with vitamin A, B vitamins, electrolytes like calcium and potassium to help replenish what is lost in sweat and keep the immune system strong. This is all in addition to the fact that it pretty much tastes like dessert. People like Hines Ward and Apolo Ohno are chocolate milk-fueled athletes too! 

As a chemistry graduate, I'm always interested in the science behind facts, especially when it comes to all the information floating around out there about nutrition and fitness.  Luckily, there is plenty of  research  supporting all the claims made about chocolate milk including multiple studies that have shown subjects who drank milk after a rigorous workout experience less exercise-induced muscle damage than those who drank water or sports drinks! 

Here's the link to more chocolate milk research facts

Enjoying some post-run chocolate milk-I almost forgot to snap a photo for proof!

Also as a sidenote, the biggest thing I'm promoting for Women's Health is going to be their RUN10FEED10 race series that partners with FEED to help fight hunger in the U.S! 49 million Americans are going hungry, and it only takes $40 to feed a family of four for a MONTH. Raising money for this cause can go so far!

  I'll post more information later, but if you are already interested in race discounts,use code "WHSESERKO" for $5 off any Run10Feed10 race. There are three official races, a few fun runs, or you can run your own 10K(solo or with friends!). I'm planning on running the Washington DC Fun Run when they announce the information but check out all the locations and details here under "Event Info"! 

UPDATE: The DC Fun Run is open for registration today so join me!

You can also make a donation to RUN10FEED10 here and help fight hunger!

Big ad right in the pages of my own Women's Health issue!
Disclaimer: I’m a Women’s Health Action Hero helping to promote RUN10FEED10 and to test out products straight from Women's Health Magazine. I was given chocolate milk free of charge in this partnership but with no other compensation. As always, all opinions are my own. 

Have you used chocolate milk as a recovery tool? What is your favorite post-workout drink or snack?

19 comments:

  1. Nomzzzzz chocolate milk is by far my favorite post-run recovery drink. Or hot chocolate... but in the summertime, frozen is where it's at. I could be a walking poster child for it even though I never remember to buy it haha I talk about it all the time when people ask at work.

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  2. love chocolate almond milk :)

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    1. Almond milk does not contain the right amount of protein for the 4:1 carb/protein ratio which has been found to be optimum for post workout recovery, unfortunately.

      Chocolate cows milk is what has been researched, discussed, and found to provide the 4:1 carb/protein ratio which benefits muscles post workout to speed replenishment of glycogen stores and decrease Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness the day or two after ones workout. Almond Milk is simply not an effective substitute if you're looking for optimum post workout recovery.

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    2. Thanks Glenn, sadly you are correct even though I too love almond milk!

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  3. The track team I help coach on always has chocolate milk for the runners post workouts! yum

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    1. Yum-it's definitely something that has been proven to work!

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  4. Chocolate milk is also my favorite recovery drink. I love that they have it after the Rock n Roll races. Nice linking up on the #FridayFive

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    1. Yes-I had it after the Rock n Roll DC Half, and it hit the spot!

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  5. I don't usually drink chocolate milk post-run - honestly I really only do after a race if they are giving it out lol! I do love it when that happens though! I just never seem to buy it at the grocery store!

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    1. I didn't buy it much before trying out this challenge of sorts-it definitely has changed my mind!

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  6. I love, love, love chocolate milk for recovery too. It's something awesome to look forward as a treat at the end of a longer run. It's the only time I treat myself since, honestly it's FULL of sugar and whatnot so and I only 'deserve' it after my long runs! Do you know - does chocolate almond milk have the same benefits?? I also drink mainly almond milk, for choc milk I stick to the moo juice!

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    1. I also love that it's like a treat. Almond milk doesn't have the same benefits because it doesn't have the same carb to protein ratio. I've been doing the same-almond milk otherwise but real chocolate milk after runs!

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  7. I am glad I read this because this is a reminder I need to try that. I figure I can try it post workout too!!!! I will try the almond chocolate milk because the regular kind may upset my stomach. Question - how many grams of sugar did the version you drank have? Trying to do better with that and chocolate milk tends to have loads of sugar.

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    1. I just like it because it's easy to make sure you drink a glass post-workout, especially if you aren't that hungry. It does have a lot of sugar, which is why I try to limit it to one glass. I bought Whole Foods 365 Lowfat Chocolate Milk which has 24g of sugar in it. I try to limit sugar elsewhere so it's not too bad for me. Some yogurts and protein bars or whatever have that much sugar so on that aspect chocolate milk is about equal, but I love the other benefits!

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  8. When I drank milk I loved chocolate milk for recovery! I need to try the chocolate almond milk.

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    1. It is such a great recovery tool. Chocolate almond milk doesn't have the same benefits but is VERY tasty!

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  9. I only drink chocolate milk when it is available at races. Visiting from the Friday 5 link up!

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