Thoughts about post race recovery shake

I take a post workout recovery shake after anything more than a recovery ride and I believe it offers me benefits. Hard to prove scientifically but I am happy. What is the worst that can happen if you take a shake?


I mean, if it was me, I’d try to take it back :woozy_face:

And, yeah, you can just store your chocolate milk with an ice pack, or in a thermos, or in a cooler.

and I’m not crazy to ride to a race, race, and then try and ride back. If that’s the case, then yeah, go for that shake!

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I take a protein shake after every tough ride. I use a hydrolyse protein (30g protein/serve) and then make up the carbs myself, sometimes with just rice milk (30g carbs) on bigger rides I add maltodextrin based on ride kJ, how many carbs during etc.

I like to have the flexibility of changing the amount of carbs depending on the workout, but I get the convenience of an all in one product.

I come from weightlifting background and am trying to maintain some muscle.

When I tracked my calories recently I found I tend to have lots of carbs when training hard and protein suffers, so the 30g protein shake aids in immediate recovery and boosts overall daily protein. Win win

Edit: to answer your specific question. I’d choose the ON gainer. You can get away with much more than 15g of carbs

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There’s definitively some conflicting info out there but I feel I’ve heard consistently (including the TR podcast with Amber) that a recovery shake after a hard workout is very beneficial and a 3:1 or 4:1 Carb to protein intake with the carbs being a high GI index like Maltodextrin or similar spikes insulin which increases the muscles absorption of protein

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+1 on the Thermos

Chocolate milk is cheaper than a fancy recovery shake mix, and has nearly identical nutrient benefits. A nice 3:1 Carb to protein ratio, and cost savings works for me!


The problem is no one in New York have cars, so cooler and such are out of the question.
Subway or biking is the way to get to races, the latter tends to be faster and more efficient.

Chocolate milk is hard to come by, specially races around here are at 6 am, finding a bodega is a scavenger hunt at that time. Plus milk makes mucus which is not fun while riding your bike. I mix the shake with water post race.

I’ll look into the ON gainer, and Ambers post.

Also another caveat is that everything needs to go in a small backpack, this is why shakes are easy on the go.

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For recovery honestly…what’s wrong with a chocolate bar and beef jerky? Make a 4:1 ratio out of it.No need for refrigeration. Sure it may not get absorbed QUITE as quickly as a completely liquid meal, you can just jam it in a saddle bag or backpack.

Sometimes I think people get too worked up over ideal, when easy and effective will accomplish the task 95% as well.


One gel 20 min before start. Sometimes I’ll do a gel right at the start line.

I won’t eat or drink in the race if it’s under an hour and it’s not hot.

Eat everything I can afterwards in a carb centric manner. :slight_smile:


I like the BSN Syntha. good ratio of protein to carb, can always add carbs. One of the best tasting whey protein powders out there!
I have it after almost every ride, except the easiest recovery rides.

Second this… I’ll down a Scratch Labs Chocolate Recovery Shake after a hard workout if I plan on doing another hard workout the next day (I.e., weight/resistance training then hard ride). Plus, Scratch Labs’ shake tastes like the next best thing to chocolate milk (albeit more expensive).

Most of my races (mtb) are 1.5-1.75 hours in length and by the time we do awards, etc it could be an hour or more after I finish before I can get a good meal. If that’s the case I take in something right after I do a warm-down. In the past I’ve done full fat chocolate milk. Recently I’ve used Tailwind Rebuild. It provides a little more than the choc milk and tastes pretty good. Rebuild is 240 cal. per serving and has 43g carbs, some sodium, and 10g of protein. They tout full chain amino acids too.
Since it comes in single serve packs I can just add it to a bottle and refill my bottle at an aid station or the medical tent. I don’t have to worry about keeping chocolate milk cold and I can always have a packet in my “go bag” in case I want some after a hard ride.

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It’s pretty much chocolate milk

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osmo recovery drink

I think im gonna try having a BSN syntha 6 protein shake and a natures bakery Fig bar pack next race. Since I already have both.

Together it’s about
420 cal
55 carb
24 protein

About 2:1 ratio… Not quite the “magic” 3:1 or 4:1 people talked about.

Maybe the race after that I’ll try 2 Fig bar pack, 1/2 scoop of the syntha 6.

540 cal
87.5 carbs
15 protein
5.8:1 ratio :thinking:

Am I overthinking this… Definitely! Gotta try to get myself out of the post race holes asap so I can be fresh for the next training session.

Since you are overthinking things already, don’t forget about absorption rates! Last thing you want to do is just down a ton of carbs and protein and just send them down the toilet a few hours later. I’d personally cap my carb intake to about 60g and protein to about 15g for a post workout shake/meal.

Just some more food for thought.

I use UHT pasteurized chocolate milk in small (8 oz/236ml) boxes. Doesn’t need to be refrigerated. Very portable. Drink 2 or 3 boxes on way home. Buy them in bulk at local warehouse store.

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I have heard a recovery drink within 30 minutes of exercise is beneficial, so I decided to make my own with pure maltodextrin, glucose, and whey isolate protein in a 3:1 carb:pro ratio. It’s super cheap to make your own and I don’t feel that nagging hunger after races or workouts. I generally feel better drinking one than if I don’t but it could be mental.

Is maltodextrin super sweet?! I never had it in pure form. Specially in 3:1 ratio that’s like eating candy I would think!

On the other @iracebikes I’m not that worried about absorption rates cus it’s post race not on the bike food. Only worried if it’ll upset my stomach, not nothing hardly ever does!

I do like those small boxed Horizon chocolate milk, they don’t need to be refrigerated, but the cost would be higher than protein shakes + Fig bar I would think.

Actually maltodextrin and glucose dilute the flavor and it just tastes bland. I added powdered peanut butter and use chocolate flavored whey isolate so that there’s more flavor