Bowl with healthy breakfast food
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Post-Cardio Power Up: These Snacks Are High in Protein and Promote Peak Performance

Looking to recharge after a workout? These protein-packed snacks will provide the nutrients to maximize your post-cardio recovery.


Apr. 15 2024, Published 4:02 p.m. ET

Brought to you by the Danone family of yogurt brands.

Refueling after a tough cardio session can be daunting. However, high-protein snacks offer the perfect solution – providing the necessary nutrients to replenish energy and support muscle growth.

Incorporating the protein-dense snacks below into your post-cardio routine can help optimize recovery and keep you feeling energized throughout the day.

Protein shakes are a good post-cardio option.

woman drinks protein shake in the gym
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Woman drinks a protein shake at the gym.

Refueling with a protein smoothie is a smart choice for those looking to recharge after doing cardio. Blending up protein powder, fruits, vegetables, and Greek yogurt or milk creates a nutrient-packed beverage that delivers a powerful punch of protein. This post-workout drink aids muscle repair and helps restore the electrolyte balance lost while exercising.

Greek yogurt and granola can help you stay regulated.

granola bowl oatmeal porridge with blueberry honey and milk on gray table
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Granola bowl (oatmeal porridge) with blueberry, honey and milk on a gray table.

Greek yogurt with granola is not only a delicious treat, but a smart choice for fueling your body.

Consuming yogurt regularly — with a recommended intake of at least 2 cups (equivalent to 3 servings) per week — can potentially lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, as suggested by research recently evaluated by the FDA (per NBC News.)

Adding granola provides complex carbohydrates essential for replenishing glycogen levels and sustaining energy.

Chocolate milk isn’t just for kids.

chocolate milk in a glass on the table
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Chocolate milk in a glass sits on the table next to straws.

After hitting up the treadmill or trail, nothing hits the spot like chugging some chocolate milk. It's not just about satisfying your sweet tooth; chocolate milk packs a serious punch when it comes to recovery.

With the perfect blend of carbohydrates and protein, it gives your muscles exactly what they need to bounce back and grow stronger, per Healthline. Plus, it's super convenient and easy to grab after a tough workout.

Load up on healthy fats with a turkey wrap.

meat filled tortilla wraps on a table with vegetables
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Filled tortilla wraps on a table with vegetables.

​​Eating a turkey or chicken wrap is a savvy move for anyone seeking a balanced and satisfying meal option. Load up a whole-grain wrap with slices of lean turkey or chicken, fresh vegetables, and some hummus or Greek yogurt for an added protein boost. The combination of lean protein and fiber-rich vegetables is an ideal pick for refueling after a workout or keeping energy levels stable throughout the day.

Don’t sleep on protein bars.

energy protein bars with different ingredient on the cutting board on the brown wooden
Source: Getty Images

Energy protein bars with different ingredients on the cutting board.

Protein bars are a solid move to kickstart that recovery game. These bars are like a convenient little package of gains, filled with protein to help rebuild muscles. They are a quick and easy snack to grab on the go, so you can refuel without missing a beat. If you need to charge up after a run, protein bars are a go-to choice for post-cardio recovery.

However, be sure to check the labels. Some products are packed with sugar and other additives — so be sure to do some research beforehand.

Fruits and nuts are a simple snack for runners.

womans hands holding lunchbox with healthy meal nuts and berries
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Woman's hands hold lunchbox filled with nuts and berries.

A combo of fruits and nuts is perfect for runners looking for a quick snack. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats, it keeps you fueled and ready for whatever's next.

The fruit brings that sweet, refreshing burst of flavor, while the nuts add a satisfying crunch and a dose of protein to help muscles recover and grow.

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