There is no question about the importance of good nutrition in improving performance and recovery, but supplementation – let’s admit it – is expensive. Luckily, with a bit of preparation, cheaper ingredients can yield the same effects.
Homemade sports drink
Sports drink is nothing else than water with carbohydrates and some salts. Instead of buying expensive brands, you can make it yourself. Take a drinking bottle of one litter and add 60g of sugar, a pinch of salt and fill the rest with water. You can flavor the drink with lemon or orange juice concentrate.
Economical replacement for energy bars
Energy bars can be easily replaced by a sandwich with jam or honey. Both contain easy to digest simple carbohydrates. To make energy bars more appealing, manufacturers add some vitamins and minerals. But there is no real benefit of taking these vitamins together with the energy bar and a healthy normal diet is likely to provide them anyway.
Energy shots in training
Energy gels and energy gummies are just another source of sugars. You could buy them in kilos in your local supermarket under the form of a candy. Candies like wine gums and gummy snakes are my favorites as they come in the right size without a sticky coating.
Slower but cheaper protein source
Whey protein is fast to be absorbed by the body, which is one of the reasons for the popularity of whey protein shakes. The cheaper version is eggs. Egg white is a little bit slower than whey is still pretty fast and contains all amino acids you need to build and recover your muscles. Don’t fear the eggs! The new nutrition guidelines of America has removed the limitation of daily number of eggs after finding that there is no correlation between the intake of eggs and blood cholesterol.
Yummy recovery drink
Another good inexpensive recovery drink after training is chocolate milk. Chocolate milk contains whey and casein protein, sugar and liquid. It contains everything your body needs to rehydrate, restore glycogen storages and support muscle synthesis and recovery.