Recovery Drinks - 4:1 Carb / Protein Ratio

I’m looking to incorporate recovery drinks after my rides, particularly something with a 4:1 or 3:1 carb to protein ratio. Looking for something that easy to make and only requires mixing with water.

What do folks use? Does anyone use Hammer Recoverite or Endurox? Also looking for something that is not crazy expensive, or super sweet.

@ambermalika I think you mentioned recovery drinks in a recent Podcast, but I didn’t catch what kind you take.

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I use Cliffs recovery. It’s tasty, seems to hit the spot for recovery. The bag it comes in is garbage and it’s a bit on the expensive side.

Rego is also a popular option. I have no experience with it.

Skratch can come in nice single serving packs. Once again I haven’t used them.

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Use and love Skratch recovery (flavor is amazing)


Chocolate milk :wink:

We now know that chocolate milk has the ideal carbohydrate-to-protein ratio

It turns out it contains exactly the right sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium electrochemical balance which the body requires for the muscle synapses to fire.


thanks :slight_smile: definitely not opposed to chocolate milk, just looking for something that I can have in the car with me, and mix with water after some training days.

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I like Recoverite, have been using it for about a year. Tastes great and no junk added. Expensive, but should last you a couple months if you use it for every workout on a MV plan. So $60 for 2 months or $2 per day. Hey, for only $2 a day you can have proper recovery as well, lol.


Hammer Recoverite, used it for years. Experimented with alternatives several times, but always come back to Recoverite.


There are so many good choices out there. Just look for that ratio, preferably 4:1. I try to avoid brands that include a lot of additives, fillers, and antioxidants. A simple formula that I like is to add plain whey protein (I’ve tried both plain Tera’s whey and Bobs Red Mill) to lemon-lime drink mix. You have to do a little math to figure out the correct ratios. Mine usually ended up being about 40g CHO / 10g PRO, which translates to roughly 200 kcal. The lemon lime and plain whey mix tastes like key lime pie. You could try any number of variations on this (orange creamsicle?), but it’s nice and easy and you can water it down to make it less sweet. Plus, you replenish some electrolytes at the same time.


SIS Rego is possibly the most pleasant recovery drink I’ve had, but it’s only about 2:1 ratio at most, and it’s expensive.

Much cheaper to do the plain whey + energy mix combo, especially if you buy them in big bags.

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Does the 4:1 ratio depend on how much carbs you ingested during the ride? If you did an 1 1/2 ride and had a gel ahead of time and say ~100g of carbs during or 50g or 150g does that at all affect the ratio?

No, on bike and post ride nutrition are separate.

Another option (and the best)… ESN Refuel

The guy who created it really keeps it pretty scientific and specific on scoops and amount to use mixed with water. Last time I purchased they had chocolate and vanilla. The flavor isn’t too intense, which I like. Sometimes I’ll add it to milk and pour some cereal on it :smiling_imp:

I don’t use it often if I can avoid it, if time allows I prefer a glass a milk and a light snack breakfast, but I really like Skratch. I workout somewhat early and after a hard workout I drink it quick before showering and getting ready for work. It does make me feel much better and doesn’t fill me up before a decent breakfast.

Would you consider making your own mix? There’s really nothing special about these “recovery mixes”. Take Skratch’s, the base ingredients are comprised of just milk + salt + cane sugar.

A gallon of milk a container of salt and a bag of sugar would go a lot farther $-wise than buying pre-made stuff. Throw a little pure cocoa in there for it’s restorative benefits and taste.

After decades of not riding a bike, my first adventure was about 7 years ago with a friend of about 60 miles with some good hills. Knowing I was going to be quite sore the next day, my friend gave me some Endurox R4 for recovery. The next day I didn’t have any muscle soreness or fatigue whatsoever. So I used Endurox from then on. Last year I ran out of R4 and mixed up some milk with Hershey’s chocolate syrup as a substitute. And the recovery results were the same as with the R4 from what I can tell. Now I’m not a racer but do a couple centuries a year. I’m also in my upper 60s in age and a consistent trainer road user, low volume plan. The milk and chocolate syrup mix works pretty well for me.

Would the ratio be different when using casein instead of whey, @ambermalika ? Are there any drawbacks of casein I am not aware of?

High 5 sell a 4:1 that you can use during exercise as well. Great for us older athletes who need more protein

Rego recovery seems to work well for me. But I tend to take less than recommended on the label, and only after intense workouts. Trying to get everything from food.

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thanks, all. I’m going to give a few of these a try and see what one I like best.