Sunday, May 13, 2012

Chocolate Milk as a Recovery Drink?

Hershey's Chocolate Milk
I thought my wife was off her rocker when she told me she read an article about chocolate milk and how chocolate milk as a recovery drink after a long run has the important ingredients to refuel your muscles.  It sounded too good to be true, and then there was the side of me that thought, “She’s not a runner, how could she possibly know what a good recovery drink would be!”  I decided I had to check it out though, because after all, who doesn’t love chocolate milk!  I waited a while, hoping she would have forgotten about the article.  Then I could tell her about it pretending that I had discovered the article.  It wasn’t hard to research and I found articles from numerous sources such as, and  My findings revealed that chocolate milk as a recovery drink is an excellent source of proteins and carbs which are both essential to refuel your muscles after a long run.

According to a study done by Joel Stager, a Professor of Exercise Physiology at Indiana University Bloomington and the Director and Professor at Counsilman Center for the Science of Swimming, there is a small window after a long run to refuel your musclesChocolate milk as a recovery drink should be used within 45 minutes to one hour after a long run or work out.  There is also a specific formula for the perfect protein/carb mix to refuel your muscles.  It should be a 4:1 ratio.  To figure it out, divide the amount of carbohydrates by the amount of protein.  The closer the ratio is to 4 the better the chocolate milk as a recovery drink.
Last year when I began my Chicago Marathon training, I made sure that I told my wife about my research and asked her if she could get me some chocolate milk and being the wonderful wife that she is, she made sure the refrigerator was always stocked.  She had even bought enough so I could share with the rest of the running group.  It got to be a routine as we did our marathon training.  And I have to tell you, after a long run, the chocolate milk sure does taste good!
I ran the Carmel Half Marathon, in Carmel, Indiana as part of my 2012Run12 and at the finish line besides your usual water, Gatorade, and bananas there was chocolate milk.  After setting a new PR at the Carmel Half Marathon, I chose the chocolate milk as a recovery drink and it tasted even sweeter!


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