Sunday, June 9, 2013

Fruity Recovery Smoothie

Recovery from what, you ask?  Due to the content of this blog, you might not guess that I'm a marathoner.  But hey, I run and then I get tasty treats, so it's really the perfect system.  Anyway, I recently finished a race and thought I'd share a super tasty smoothie that I use for my and the husband's training.

I'd made a version of this smoothie for a long time, but recently have perfected it with some inspiration from Scott Jurek's book, Eat and Run.  He's an amazing ultramarathoner, an inspiration of mine, and he happens to be a great chef as well.  With his crazy mileage, he would know a thing or two about recovery.  Anyway, he had some great tips to amp up my post-run smoothie to not only taste great, but be extra beneficial as well.

There is a lot of flexibility in this smoothie - use your favorite fruits!  Fresh fruits work well, of course, but if you want the smoothie to be more icy (perfect on a hot day), then use frozen fruits.  Additionally, this smoothie could easily be made vegan by taking out the yogurt.

Some nutritional reasons to love this smoothie:
-Refueling within the first 30 minutes post-workout is ideal (fuel is most efficiently absorbed within that timeframe), and a smoothie is an easy and quick way to refuel.  It might be particularly helpful if you don't feel like eating solid food post-workout.
-Potassium from the banana helps maintain the mineral balance in your body and can combat muscle cramping.
-All of the fruit provides quick carbohydrates to restore glycogen to depleted muscles as well as essential vitamins and antioxidants that defend against free radical damage to muscle tissues.
-Protein from the yogurt and protein powder promote muscle repair.
-The miso replaces the salt and electrolytes lost in sweat.
-Flax and chia seeds provide omega 3 fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory, and may reduce joint pain intensity.
-Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties as well, and may prevent delayed onset muscle soreness.

And, it's simply very tasty!  Perfect for recovery, whether from an intense workout at the gym, chasing your kid around the park, or just a yummy treat on a hot day.

Fruity Recovery Smoothie
(My recipe, with inspiration from Scott Jurek's book, Eat and Run)
Makes ~3 cups - 1 large, or 2 medium sized servings

1 ripe banana (sliced and frozen is great, as well)
1/2 cup frozen mango
1 cup frozen berries (I used a mix of strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries, but blueberries are wonderful too!)
4 oz. yogurt (We love Noosa, but definitely use one that has probiotics in it)
2 tsp mellow miso
1 Tbsp flax seeds, ground
1 Tbsp chia seeds (or just double the flax seeds)
3 Tbsp protein powder (I love the brown rice protein powder)
1/2 tsp ground ginger (or if you like, 1/2 - 1 inch fresh ginger, minced)
1/4 cup Pom juice
1/2 cup Almond milk

Puree all ingredients in blender.  Add more almond milk if it's too thick.  Pour into glasses, and drink up!


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