You’ve just run five miles.
You’ve just had a killer upper body workout at the gym.
You’ve just centered yourself with an hour of yoga.
No matter what your preferred workout is, they all have one important step in common that most people overlook: recovery.
For many of us who are exercising to stay fit, it may seem counterintuitive to load up on a big, protein-heavy meal after you get a sweat on, but it’s important to rehydrate the body and strengthen muscle. See, during exercise, you’re actually breaking down muscle and in order for that muscle to become stronger, you have to make sure the tissue is repaired properly.
One of the best ways to refuel is with a post-workout recovery smoothie.
It All Starts with Pineapple
For regular readers around here, it’s no surprise that we’ll start building our smoothie with pineapple. Pineapples, like those grown on the lush, sunny fields of Chestnut Hill Farms in Costa Rica are not only juicy and delicious but also packed with a ton of health benefits.
Our bodies love pineapples for the many vitamins and minerals, but especially bromelain. This enzyme helps reduce muscle inflammation and soreness, meaning you can get back to your workouts quicker. Pineapples are also a great source of Vitamin C and manganese, antioxidants that help maintain bones and blood vessels.
Orange Ya Glad You Had a Smoothie?
The next ingredient we’ll be adding to our recovery smoothie is the delectable orange.
Pirates claim oranges can prevent scurvy, and rest assured they do a whole lot more than just that.
Oranges are crammed full of Vitamin C, which we already discussed. Even more important they come with potassium, an electrolyte that is lost in sweat during intense workouts. They’re also relatively low in calories, so you can get all the flavor and benefits of your favorite sports drink without any of the downsides like excessive sugar.
Make Your Morning Magnificent with Mango
We’re going to round out our flavor explosion with an often forgotten fruit: mango. Indigenous to Asia, it’s not surprising that many people opt for apples, oranges, or even bananas, but that changes now!
Mangoes are rich in vitamins A and C. Vitamin C aids in collagen production and tissue repair, while Vitamin A is important for immune function and eye health. Both are antioxidants, which help combat oxidative stress caused by intense physical activity. They also have an alkalizing effect on the body, which can help balance pH levels, especially beneficial after a workout that can produce lactic acid and lower pH levels in muscles.
Opt for Almond Milk
You might be asking yourself “Should I drink Almond Milk or Dairy Milk after my workout?”
After all, milk builds strong bones. This is true–and chocolate milk is actually a fantastic source of protein–but you might want to opt for Almond Milk in your recovery smoothie for a couple of reasons.
First, for our lactose intolerant friends, the last thing they want to do after a workout is accidentally consume dairy.
Second, dairy milk contains casein, a complex protein that takes time to be digested and absorbed. You’re better off finding your protein from a protein powder–more on that in a second.
Third, almond milk contains carbohydrates and protein which is important for muscle repair and recovery.
Plus, it tastes good!
1 cup Chestnut Hill Farms Perfect Pineapple, chopped
1 cup Mango, chopped
1 Orange, peeled and sliced
1 cup Almond Milk
2 scoops Protein Powder (We like Orgain Organic Protein Powder, but feel free to swap this out for your preferred brand!)
2 cups ice
Most smoothie recipes tell you to add all of the ingredients into a blender and mix, but we’ve got a little twist for you.
Everyone wants the taste and benefits of fresh fruit after a workout, but no one wants to spend the energy to chop them up. That’s why we recommend chopping and freezing the fruit ahead of time. Pop all of the ingredients into a zip lock bag, toss it in the freezer, and you’ll be ready to make a delicious recovery smoothie at a moment’s notice.
- Start by chopping your Chestnut Hill Farms Perfect Pineapple and mango. Peel and slice the orange. Combine ingredients in a freezer bag. Freeze for at least 24 hours. (Note: properly stored fruit can last up to 12 months in the freezer!)
- Pour Almond Milk into a blender followed by the frozen fruit. Blend until smooth.
- If you are unhappy with the consistency, add ice to create a thicker smoothie.
Stay Connected with Chestnut Hill Farms
Want more pineapple recipes and facts delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up for our newsletter today!