If you've been following me for long you probably know I'm a big fan of smoothies. They are a convenient way to pack nutrients into your diet without much prep time; more nutrients and less preparation is a win-win in my book.
Since I usually beat myself up this time of year with a wide variety of activities - strength training, backcountry skiing, running, hiking, mountain biking, and road cycling - I put extra effort into recovery techniques to allow my body to keep up. One thing I've found that makes a notable difference for me is to ingest ample recovery nutrients within an hour of intense training sessions. Thus, I've combined these nutrients into a tasty smoothie that I can make ahead of time, store in a thermos bottle, and have waiting for me.
Here's the recipe:
- 1 cup tart cherry juice (I've been opting for Trader Joe's )
- 1 scoop Beta Red Original
- 2 scoops Recovery Protein
- 1 heaping tablespoon Pranjali Turmeric Paste
- 1 teaspoon Cacao powder (Volupta brand from Costco)
- 2 heaping handfuls spinach
- 1 tablespoon avocado
- 3-4 leaves red cabbage
- 1 medium to large stalk celery
- 1.5 cups frozen cherries
- 1.5 frozen bananas
- 4 ice cubes
- Pour cherry juice into blender. Add spinach, celery, cabbage, turmeric paste, and avocado. Blend at low speed to break up solid ingredients, then slowly increase to max speed to liquify. I use a Vitamix since it allows me to liquify practically any food, but there now seem to be other high-quality blenders that work similarly.
- Add dry ingredients - Beta Red, Recovery Protein, and Cacao Powder. Blend at low speed until thoroughly mixed.
- Add Frozen ingredients: banana and cherries. Blend at low speed to break up and slowly increase to medium speed to achieve desired consistency.
- Add ice and blend until mixture is smooth.
Some may wonder why I include Beta Red Pre-Workout in a recovery smoothie. Well, it also helps with recovery by increasing blood flow to help oxygenate and shuttle nutrients to worked muscle. I don't use it after all my workouts, but I do try to have a serving after my toughest ones. It has a synergistic effect with many of the other nutrients in this recipe as it helps them get to where they are most needed.
One last thing. This recipe makes two servings for those whose appetites are not as monstrous as mine. You can either cut back on the amount of each ingredient or save half for another time. I've found that quality thermos bottles are ideal for keeping smoothies semi-frozen overnight when left in the freezer. Just be sure not to leave them in the freezer too long as they will eventually freeze solid.