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Archives for the day Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

A Secret to Recovery: Chocolate Milk

Drinking and eating the right foods and supplements after a hard effort out on the road can lead to faster recovery and less muscle pain.   The biggest problem many people have involves trying to figure out what works the best — and what is the easiest to chug down after a workout.  The kind folks over at listed 10 different post-run drinks that help “fuel fast recovery.”

I’d like to single out a single drink idea that many people likely overlook as a post-run recovery drink:  chocolate milk.

Per the article:

Why: The drink you loved as a kid has the ideal amount of carbohydrates and protein that tired muscles need for recovery, says Joel Stager, Ph.D., director of the department of kinesiology at Indiana University. According to a study Stager led, drinking chocolate milk postexercise speeds up recovery and increases the time it takes to reach exhaustion during a subsequent exercise session better than sports drinks. And a 2007 British study found that regular milk is better than water or a sports drink at restoring fluid levels following a bout of exercise in the heat. Plus, milk contains bone-strengthening vitamin D and calcium. Sipping Points: Single-serving containers are handy for tossing into a cooler for a postrun treat and for portion control.

Chocolate milk is an excellent way to recover, and can be mixed with whey protein and other recovery drinks.  Ted likes mixing chocolate milk with some of his recovery drinks, which helps make the taste a bit more bearable.

The taste of chocolate milk is good, the science behind it has been proven, so what’s your excuse?  Got milk? 😉

Of the “road tested” products listed, including Powerade Ion4, Clif Quench, Gatorade Powder Pack, and Accelerade Hydro, I’ve had the most success with the Clif Quench drink.  I posted a review of the Clif Quench in late February, which you can read here.

Editor’s Note:  I’d just like to thank @Cool_running on Twitter, who originally tweeted a link to the article. 🙂

Doping in sports

While reading an ongoing published feature posted on, I stumbled upon a series of articles on doping in sports.  It started out with a blurb about the 1976 East German women’s swim team that won 11 of 13 gold medals.  Then it moved in to the realm of professional cycling where the probability of the winning cyclist at the Tour De France doping is believed to be 100%.

My first thoughts after reading something like this is something along the lines of, “Those dirty rotten cheaters”!  I read on.  The German women may not have known they were doing something wrong.

I am fairly certain they did not know of the problems they would have later in life as a result of the steroid use.  I am fairly certain the cyclist knew they were and are doing something wrong.  When elite athletes die from heart attacks at age 30, something is wrong.

Reading into doping in sports, it makes me wonder what is really right or wrong in sports.  Take a look through this web site and you will find that it is loaded with information on better living through chemistry.  Do I really know what is in a protein mix?  What about the instant energy in a bag that I carry around for long runs?  What is a BCAA or an amino acid compound?  They seem to work for me and they don’t seem to have side effects.  Where do we draw the line?  Who am I to say my line should be the same as everyone else’s?

I will put my line in the sand as something that does not cause adverse side effects or harm others as fine for use.  Anything that has a risk of adverse side effects or causes harm in others is bad.  I am sure that I can find thousands of reasons why both my standards are wrong.

Reading the articles gave me a lot of insight into doping in sports and I found that I really like the Scitable web site.