Our body is an amazingly complex machine. All of its various cells and tissues communicate with each other, and their activities are precisely coordinated. Even as you sit reading this, your heart pumps blood throughout your body, your intestines digest and absorb nutrients, your kidneys clear waste products and your lungs bring in oxygen. Although you may feel at rest, your body is physiologically quite active. Imagine, then, how much more active all of your body systems become when you engage in active movement. As your physical activity increases, so does your muscle's physiological activity. Active muscles require more nutrients to serve the wide variety of metabolic functions and events. It is a common misconception that physical activity is an "anabolic event", during which our body builds tissues, when it is, in fact, a "catabolic event", during which tissues and fuel sources are being broken down. It is the post-exercise recovery that is responsible for the rebuilding process. And as in any construction site, the right building blocks are required to rebuild that which has broken down and become depleted.
The six important recovery 'building blocks' are:
1. Carbohydrates / Glycogen:
- Glycogen is the storage form of carbohydrate in the body.
- We have a limited capacity to store it.
- It is the limiting fuel for endurance exercise.
- It is needed to burn fat.
- It is replenished by consuming carbohydrates.
- It recovers slowly, therefore using the "window of opportunity" is essential.
- Its most potent "window of opportunity" is up to 30 min. after exercise, with the following 24 hours also being very important.
- Optimum recovery needs about 50 to 100 g carbohydrates by the first 30 minutes, though practically speaking, this may be difficult depending on the condition of your gastrointestinal tract, especially after exercise in the heat. EMENDTM supplies 60 g of carbohydrate per litre, an optimal starting point.
- The best carbohydrates for quick recovery are high glycemic index carbohydrates.
- EMENDTM uses Dextrose as its' principle carbohydrate, and sucrose as its' secondary carbohydrate, totaling 60 grams of carbohydrate per litre of fluid, for rapid glycogen repletion.
- It is an essential building block in the body, from muscles to the immune system.
- It is comprised of essential and non-essential amino acids.
- It is vital to consume complete proteins.
- When used as fuel, its' anabolic capacity is wasted, therefore a "protein sparing" diet is highly recommended.
- Protein induced muscle recovery is at its peak during the "window of opportunity".
- Its most potent "window of opportunity" is up to 30 min. after exercise.
- It is best absorbed in combination with carbohydrates.
- Optimum recovery needs at least 5-9 grams of protein by the first 30 minutes.
- EMENDTM supplies 15 grams of ultrafiltered whey protein isolate per litre. Our whey protein isolate is considered the highest quality in the world. It is sourced from New Zealand grass fed cows. It is also non GMO. (Non Genetically Modified)
- It is our most important nutrient.
- Dehydration during prolonged exercise, and chronically, is detrimental to performance.
- During recovery, replace fluids at the rate of 1½ x the deficit.
- Prevent or reduce dehydration during exercise - using e load™ is a great way to achieve this.
- See our Post Exercise Fluid Calculator to determine the best way to recover your fluid losses.
- Replace fluids as soon as possible to prevent chronic dehydration.
- EMENDTM contains an optimal sodium concentration to facilitate rehydration.
- EMENDTM tastes great with natural orange flavor, encouraging you to drink.
- Electrolytes are imperative to preserving water balance and the function of the nervous and the muscular systems.
- Electrolytes are lost in sweat and urine both during and after exercise.
- Your recovery drink should include the appropriate amounts of sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, magnesium and zinc.
- Sodium should be in the range of 900-1000mg/litre for optimal rehydration.
- EMENDTM supplies 940 mg/litre of sodium, which is a practical upper limit of sodium due to impaired taste with higher concentrations. All other electrolytes are present in physiological ranges.
- Antioxidants are important in the recovery period as they neutralize free radicals generated by aerobic exercise.
- They can help reduce protein oxidation by free radicals and prevent secondary muscle fatigue.
- Water soluble antioxidants are safest as surpluses can be urinated out of the body.
- Vitamin C is a safe, effective, water soluble antioxidant.
- EMENDTM contains a buffered (low acid), long shelf life form of Vitamin C that is very stomach friendly.
- pH is a measure of acidity.
- Prolonged exercise, especially in the heat, is especially stressful, and as such will increase the amount of acid in your stomach (stress increases stomach acid, as many of you with stomach ulcers will know). This can lead to stomach pain/cramps. Therefore, you want to minimize the amount of acid in your drink. A pH of 7.0 is neutral, like water; a pH above 7.0 is basic, and a pH below 7.0 is acidic. Since protein is basic (the opposite of acidic), drinks that contain a relatively high amount of this compound are more likely to have a higher pH, often above 7.0. These very high protein drinks are more difficult to digest, especially after intense exercise in the heat. Drinks with a pH below 7.0 are likely to have a more stomach friendly amount of protein, and the closer to 7.0 their pH, the more stomach friendly the drink. EMENDTM has a pH of almost 5.0. This is the closest to 7.0 of any recovery drink with a pH less than 7.0, indicating a level of protein and overall acidity that is stomach friendly.
For a more detailed discussion of EMENDTM, please see "The Science of EMENDTM".