Try one of these 30 nutritious suggestions.
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What you eat after a run to boost recovery is just as important as what you munch on before your miles to maintain energy. Post run meals restore nutrients lost through exercise, and the right foods can help refuel your muscles, strengthen your bones, and reduce the inflammation that intense exercise produces.
If you’re not sure exactly what to eat after a run, we have plenty of suggestions. Stock up on these 30 nutritious foods to help you recover faster and stay healthy through every training block.
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Your muscles get broken down during a workout, and protein is key for building them up again. Greek yoghurt, which contains more protein than regular varieties, is an easy snack to grab out of the fridge postrun. Opt for plain versions, which have about 6 grams of sugar and 15 grams of protein per serving. Flavoured varieties sneakily pack in added sugar.
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We know, avocado toast is the trend that won’t quit—but the combination of healthy monounsaturated fats from avocados and whole grains from toast makes for a great (and easy) postrun bite. Sprinkle on salt for a little extra sodium.
If the last time you saw this food was at your grandparents’ house, it’s time to bring it to your own refrigerator. Cottage cheese is packed with protein and calcium, and its relatively high sodium content is great for replenishing the electrolytes.
Whether you like it fried, roasted, baked, or added to a soup, tofu is an excellent source of protein (it contains all nine amino acids, making it a complete protein). Plus, it has iron, calcium, magnesium, and zinc.
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Eggs, a classic protein workhorse, can be added to literally anything—try them fried on top of toast, tossed with brown rice for a healthy stir fry, or folded with veggies for a nutritious scramble. You can also use them to make egg muffins on a Monday, then save them up for breakfast all week.
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Tinned fish is trending right now. And sardines are a great way to get in on that good-for-you fad. Salty sardines, like salmon, are an excellent source of protein and bone-boosting fatty acids, as well as essential vitamins like B12.
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Whey protein has been somewhat neglected in favour of whole foods as of late, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a good recovery food. Look for brands that are low in sugar, then blitz up with berries, oats, and milk for a nutrient-rich smoothie.
When you’re depleted after a run, it’s tempting to reach for a sugary granola bar. But whole and ancient grains like farro, quinoa, brown rice, and barley are a healthier choice for replenishing carb stores, as they also provide protein and fibre that’ll keep you full longer.
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A handful of nuts—such as almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, and pistachios—goes a long way in satisfying your protein, fat, and salt needs after a run. Plus, they pack minerals like calcium and zinc that boost bone health.
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If you’ve ever felt nauseous after a particularly hard session, ginger is a life saver; but while the rhizome’s stomach-settling abilities are well known, its other benefits, like reducing inflammation, may be less so. Brew a pot of ginger tea for a warming recovery drink.
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This portable, easy-to-digest fruit offers a one-two punch of carbs and potassium, which can stave off muscle cramping. Plus, there are many other science-backed benefits of bananas, like supporting your hydration and gut health.
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Whole Wheat Pasta
While these foods can be sneaky sugar bombs, their high carb profiles make them great for a quick energy boost during or after a run. Figs, dates, and plums also provide fibre, which keep you full between meals.
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A staple in Asian cuisines for centuries, turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory agent. Add a shake of turmeric to hummus for a great postrun snack or turn it into a golden milk latte, blended with your milk of choice.
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These dark greens are chock-full of vitamin K, which helps produce proteins that strengthen bones. Leafy greens also promote heart health and pack in lots of other important, wellbeing-boosting vitamins and minerals.
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These legumes are high in fibre and protein, which makes them a fantastic plant-based protein source. Toss them in olive oil and seasonings, then roast them in a hot oven for about 25 minutes for a crunchy, satisfying snack or topping.
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Made from simmering chicken bones low and slow, this popular broth is said to alleviate joint pain and promote healthy bones. After a cold run, sip it straight from a mug, or use it as a base for a satisfying soup.