Recovery Smoothies for Athletes

10 Recovery Smoothies for Athletes

After an intense workout or endurance run, your muscles are ready to recover for the next session. Making a post-workout smoothie can give your muscles all the nutrients they need to heal faster.

A good muscle recovery smoothie should contain high-quality proteins, antioxidants, and carbohydrates. It’s best to drink your recovery shake within 30 minutes following your run or workout.

A little down below you’ll find my favorite smoothie recipes for athletes, but first I’d like to show you the best ingredients to use for your after-workout smoothies.

Best Ingredients for Muscle Recovery Smoothies

Tart Cherry Smoothie

Berries

A handful of berries may be what you need to recover from an intense workout. 

The muscle soreness you feel the day after an intense workout is caused by inflammation. Berries are rich in antioxidants and may help reduce inflammation.

This study indicates that daily blueberry consumption may reduce oxidative stress and help you recover more quickly.

Bananas

Bananas are a great recovery food. They’re rich in carbs and potassium, two nutrients your body craves after a workout.

This study found that bananas may be just as effective as expensive sports drinks for recovery. According to the research, bananas are all you need for replenishing nutrients and reducing post-workout inflammation. 

Leafy Greens

You’re not getting enough healthy greens in your diet? Why not try adding them to your muscle-recovery smoothies?

Green smoothies are an easy way to give your body all the nutrients it needs to recover quickly. 

Leafy green vegetables are rich in iron and magnesium, two nutrients important for muscle development. Several studies found that testosterone levels and muscle strength are correlated to magnesium levels in your body.

Oats

Whole grains or oats are great for muscle recovery. Oats provide complex carbs, which can help refill your depleted muscles. They’re also a good source of protein that your muscles need for growth. 

Green Tea & Yerba Mate

Green tea may be just what you need after a hard workout. Several studies show that green tea has anti-inflammatory properties that may reduce muscle damage and help you recover faster.

Yerba mate tea is another tea rich in antioxidants that can be beneficial for athletes.

This study found that yerba mate tea may improve muscle recovery. Men in this study were able to recover much faster from weight training than those who only drank water.

Since mate and green tea are also stimulating, drinking them before and after workouts both work fine.

Tart Cherries

Cherries, especially tart cherries, are rich in compounds that may help you reduce muscle pain after an intense workout.

In this research, long-distance runners that drank tart cherry juice reported significantly less pain after a running event than the placebo group. It’s believed that the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties may help you reduce muscle pain.

Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is a low-calorie, high-protein cheese that’s especially popular among athletes. Its taste is quite mild and works well in smoothies.

Over 70% of cottage cheese’s calories are made of protein. It’s not only a great source of muscle-building nutrients but is packed with vitamins and minerals that are essential for muscle recovery.

Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt contains almost two times the protein of regular yogurt. It’s the perfect ingredient for post-workout smoothies to build muscles. It’s best to avoid added sugar and only use plain Greek yogurt. We’re going to use fruits as sweeteners in the smoothie recipes for athletes down below.

Whey Protein

Some proteins are better than others for athletes. When it comes to gaining muscles, whey protein might be your first choice. This study found that milk-based proteins, like whey, are better than soy protein for gaining muscles. 

Proteins are the main building blocks of our muscles and bodies. When deciding on a protein powder it’s best to choose a protein that supplies all nine essential amino acids. Whey protein is packed with them!

Whey doesn’t taste very well on its own, that’s why it comes in many different flavors. Most whey proteins contain artificial sweeteners like acesulfame potassium, which may be bad for your health though. Unflavored, organic, grass-fed whey protein powder (that’s a long name) is your healthiest option.

10 Smoothie Recipes for Athletes

Now that we know the best ingredients for our post-workout shakes, why not give these ten delicious smoothie recipes for athletes a try?

Healthy Green Smoothie for Athletes

Green Smoothie for Athletes

Leafy greens, like spinach, are rich in nitrates. Nitrates are especially important for athletes. Studies have found that these compounds may boost your performance during workouts. One study even suggests that nitrates may change muscle fiber composition and might help improve your competitive edge. 

Coconut water makes this green smoothie very refreshing. It’s low in calories and high in potassium, a mineral that’s essential for athletes

What You’ll Need: 

  • 2 handfuls baby spinach
  • 1 cup of coconut water
  • 1 tsp flaxseeds
  • ½ green apple, deseeded and cut into chunks
  • ½-inch piece fresh ginger 
  • 1 cup mango, frozen
  • 1 scoop whey protein, vanilla 

How to Prepare:

Wash the spinach and apple. Deseed the apple and cut it into chunks. Peel the ginger piece, if it’s not organic. Place everything into your blender and blend for 1-2 minutes depending on the strength of your blender.

Recovery Smoothie Recipe

Recovery Smoothie

Oats and bananas are high in carbs that can help restore energy levels. Oats are also a good source of protein, helping your body to repair muscles. In addition to fueling your muscles, they can help you balance blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Cinnamon may help reduce inflammation and muscle soreness, exactly what you need after an intense workout. This spice might also help you regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • 2 bananas, sliced and frozen
  • ½ apple
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 scoop whey protein, vanilla 

How to Prepare:

Peel the bananas. You can slice and freeze them the day before to make this smoothie even more refreshing. Add everything to your blender jar and blend for one minute. Enjoy!


Oatmeal Smoothie for Athletes

Oatmeal Smoothie for Athletes

Berries are one of the healthiest foods you can get your hands on. This study done on long-distance runners indicates that daily consumption of blueberries may help reduce inflammation. They’re rich in antioxidants that can help you fight oxidative stress. 

Oats can fill you up and help restore your glycogen levels after a long run or intense workout. The vanilla whey and honey make this smoothie sweet and delicious. It almost tastes like a dessert.

What You’ll Need:

    • ½ cup rolled oats
    • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
    • ½ cup mixed berries, frozen
    • 1 banana
    • 2 tbsp honey
    • a hint of cinnamon
    • 1 scoop whey protein, vanilla

How to Prepare:

Peel the banana and place everything into your blender jar. Blend for one minute until creamy and smooth. 

Power Smoothie for Athletes

Power Smoothie for Athletes

This green power smoothie is perfect for athletes. It can help replenish your energy levels and give you a boost at any time of your day. It’s rich in macronutrients as well as micronutrients. It has a healthy dose of protein and “good” fats, as well as vitamins and minerals. It’s the perfect green smoothie recipe for those of us who don’t like greens. The honey and the vanilla-flavored protein powder make this smoothie quite sweet and enjoyable! The avocado gives it the nice creamy texture we all crave. If you’re on a calorie-restricted diet, simply skip the avocado and peanut butter for a low-calorie smoothie. For more weight loss smoothies, check out our 11 green smoothies under 100 calories.  

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 bananas, sliced and frozen
  • 1 handful baby spinach
  • ½ avocado
  • 1 scoop whey protein, vanilla
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp organic peanut butter

How to Prepare:

Peel and slice the bananas and freeze them the day before. Deseed the avocado and scoop out the flesh. Wash the baby spinach and place everything into your blender jar. Blend 1-2 minutes on the highest setting until well incorporated. Enjoy this delicious and healthy treat! 

High-Calorie Smoothie for Weight Gain

High-Calorie Smoothie for Weight Gain

For those of you who are looking to gain muscles and weight, here’s your perfect after-workout smoothie. This smoothie has 844 calories and almost 60 grams of protein! For more high-calories smoothies, check out my 12 healthy smoothie recipes for weight gain.

Greek yogurt is the perfect food for athletes. It’s very high in protein. In fact, it has almost twice the amount of protein than your regular yogurt. It’s best to use plain Greek yogurt and avoid added sugar if your goal is to gain lean muscle mass. 

Avocadoes are rich in calories and full of heart-healthy fats. While fat shouldn’t be your first choice after a workout, avocadoes are still a decent choice. They’re rich in potassium. Avocadoes even have more potassium than bananas!

This essential mineral may help you prevent muscle cramps after an intense workout. Potassium can also help to break down glycogen and fuel your cells. 

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup milk
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp flaxseeds
  • ½ avocado
  • 1 banana, sliced and frozen
  • 1 scoop whey protein, chocolate 
  • 1 tbsp organic raw chocolate powder
  • 2 tbsp organic peanut butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

How to Prepare:

Peel the banana and freeze it the day before. It’s best to use natural, organic peanut butter.  Deseed the avocado and scoop out the avocado flesh. Place everything into your blender and blend for 1-2 minutes. Enjoy!

Smoothie for Endurance Athletes

Smoothie for Endurance Athletes

Pomegranate juice is a great source of antioxidants that may help improve your athletic performance. While running and working out is great for you, it also places stress on your body. Antioxidants are shown to reduce this oxidative stress and help you recover faster. 

Polyphenols and quercetin, two antioxidants found in pomegranates, can be especially beneficial for athletes. These antioxidants give pomegranates their vibrant red color. They’re believed to reduce inflammation and help your muscles recover faster.

Pomegranates are also rich in nitrates. These compounds can help dilate your blood vessels and deliver more oxygen throughout your body.

What You’ll Need:

  • ½ cup pomegranate juice
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup frozen tart cherries
  • 1 tsp flaxseeds

How to Prepare:

Peel the banana and add everything to your blender jar. You can add some ice to make this smoothie more refreshing. Blend for one minute until well combined. Enjoy!

Best Smoothie for Athletes

Best Smoothies for Athletes

Tart cherries are filled with antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties. This study found that tart cherry juice may lessen muscle pain and help you recover faster after endurance exercise or strength training. 

Tart cherries also contain melatonin. This hormone is essential for regulating sleep-wake cycles. It may help you get a good night’s sleep which is essential for muscle recovery. 

Beets are athletes’ best friend! Drinking beet juice can raise nitric oxide levels in your body. Nitric oxide can help you increase blood flow and strengthen muscle contraction. It’s believed that supplementing beet juice can help you use oxygen more efficiently and therefore increase your athletic performance. In this study, cyclists who drank beet juice before a trial were 3 percent faster! 

Turmeric is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is your body’s response to stress. Intense workouts and long-distance runs can cause immense stress. Curcumin, the active compound of turmeric, may help you battle this inflammation. This study found that curcumin may help reduce muscle soreness and help you recover faster.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 banana, sliced and frozen
  •  1 cup tart cherries, frozen
  • 1 cup beet juice
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder

How to Prepare:

Peel the banana and freeze it the night before. Add everything to your blender and blend for 30-60 seconds until smooth. Wash the blender jar immediately after making this smoothie to prevent turmeric stains. 

Recovery Smoothie for Runners

Recovery Smoothie for Runners

After running your body craves carbs and protein. This recovery smoothie combines healthy carbs and protein with anti-inflammatory antioxidants. The perfect combination for quick muscle recovery. 

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 scoop whey protein powder, vanilla
  • ½ cup strawberries, frozen
  • 1 cup blueberries frozen
  • ½ cup tart cherries, frozen
  • 1 banana

How to Prepare: 

Peel the banana and place everything into your blender jar. Blend for 1-2 minutes depending on the strength of your blender. 

Breakfast Smoothie for Athletes

Breakfast Smoothie for Athletes

This filling breakfast smoothie for athletes is full of goodness. It has a whopping 42 grams of protein! It’s also rich in healthy fats and complex carbs. It contains everything you need for a great day and effective workouts. 

Blueberries have been found to reduce muscle damage after exercising. In this small study, blueberries helped muscle recovery after intense leg workouts. 

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup blueberries, frozen 
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • a small handful cashew nuts
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • ½ avocado
  • 1 scoop whey protein powder, vanilla

How to Prepare:

Peel the banana and deseed the avocado. Scoop the avocado flesh out and place everything into your blender jar. Blend on the highest setting for 1-2 minutes until creamy and smooth. 


 Morning Smoothie for Athletes

Morning Smoothie for Athletes

Here’s another morning smoothie for athletes. There’s nothing better than starting the day with a healthy, filling breakfast smoothie!

This delicious smoothie combines “good” fats, antioxidants, and a healthy dose of complex carbs. It can fill you up and give you all the energy you’ll need to get through a great workout. 

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 banana, sliced and frozen
  • ½ cup rolled oats
  • 1 scoop whey protein powder, vanilla
  • 1 tbsp organic cashew butter
  • 1 cup strawberries, frozen

How to Prepare:

Slice the banana and freeze it the night before. It’s best to use all-natural, organic nut butter for this smoothie. Place everything into your blender jar and blend for 1 minute. Enjoy!

These were my favorite smoothie recipes for athletes. I hope you’ll enjoy these post-workout smoothies as much as I do. What are your favorite smoothie recipes after your workout? If you have any questions or great recipes to share, I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below! Always remember to stay vibrant, happy and healthy.

Vibrant Happy Healthy

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