When it comes to your post-workout routine, having a set of pre-packed essentials on-hand can make a huge difference in your recovery process. We know chocolate milk has all the nutrients you need to recover in one convenient package, but what other tools optimize the process? To find out what post-workout must-haves our ambassadors stock their gym bags with, we turned to some of our Super Ambassadors to tell us: What’s in your recovery bag?
These days it seems like I am always carrying a recovery bag around with me because I try to fit all my training in while the boys are at school.
My first thought is refueling, so I always make sure I have a little cooler bag in there with my chocolate milk, water and a snack like a Larabar, nuts or piece of fruit (if this is a finish line bag, I usually have a treat in there like a bag of chips but shh, don’t tell anyone!)
I always have a full change of clothes so I can change right away and put on my compressions socks and recovery shoes to help my legs and feet recover. Since I’m often heading off to do something else, I usually have a brush and a few toiletries in there so I can try and make myself presentable again. Baby wipes are like a little shower in a package!
And then there are all the random treasures that I keep in my bag too like a lacrosse ball and mini roller to work out any kinks, a plastic bag for my wet clothes, spare headphones, headbands, sunglasses, Buffs and chapstick is a must!
Of course I’ve got chocolate milk as one of the fave items in my recovery bag, but what else have I got? With the amount of running I do there’s definitely a foam roller or “The Stick” that I use to roll out tight muscles. Any runner will tell you that a tight IT band is the worst enemy of a volume intense training regime, so those are pretty key. I also use an analgesic remedy from Sage Wellness which smells nice and that I can apply to help with painful joints. A bottle of water will also be in that bag for hydration. And finally, I always have my phone in my bag, and sometimes with me on my runs. I track my runs using Strava and Garmin Connect so after a race or big run I’m always keen to see how I measure up against my previous performance, and my fellow athletes, and maybe post a fun pic to Instagram!
For me, recovery is all about taking care of my body, to prepare it for the rest of the day and to bounce right back into training for the next event! I'm a very sweaty runner, so I always pack dry clothes to change into as soon as I can after a race, especially in chilly weather. My compression socks also come along with me every time, they're instant relief for tired legs. After an injury this winter I have come to depend on my foam roller. A rolled up blanket fits inside the foam roller, and keeps me off the wet grass while I stretch and roll. I do active isolated stretching, so my stretching rope is always in my race bag. I've learned to bring some trail mix along in case the event food is minimal, and my own bottle of water just in case the finish line only has small cups. I like to be able to walk around with my water after a race without having to refill a cup many times! I also really love to bring my S'well bottle filled with chocolate milk. The bottle keeps it cold for hours so it's always ready for me, whenever I finish the race.