Recovery Drink Helps Get You Fit, Faster: Our Top 5 Picks

By Alix Turoff

When you’re stuck in a fitness rut, it’s easy to go days without hitting the gym. The dreaded plateau is a really tough thing to break and sometimes, switching up your routine just won’t cut it. When not even a shopping spree at lululemon or your attractive trainer can get you to the gym, why not try giving your workout a boost with some of our favorite fitness drinks?

Bean & Body (12 pack for $29.95, beanandbody.com)
Call us biased, but we’re rather partial to beans, especially of the coffee variety. Bean & Body’s environmentally friendly coffee drinks, though, are not your standard sugar-laden bottled Frappuccino. (We love you Starbucks, but 30g of sugar before a workout is just not happening for us). We decided to get crafty and blended it with ice to make a smoothie before our workout using the “energy” blend. The caffeine gave us just the right amount of energy to power through our workout and the guarana and yerba mate made us more alert. Every blend is brimming with natural antioxidants that improve immune function and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. The MarTEAni flavor is a combination of tea and coffee with spicy undertones of cardamom, clove and ginger; the rescue blend refreshes the body and brightens the mood with a sweet, caramel-like flavor  (yum!); while the anti-ox blend has flavors of pomegranate, acai and blueberries that act to protect the body’s cells from the harm caused by free radicals. With so many recent studies showing the benefits of coffee (The Journal of The American Medical Association found that drinking coffee is associated with a decreased risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes and a University of Scranton study found that coffee is the #1 source  of antioxidants in the US diet). Even better, every purchase of Bean & Body supports the “Protected Grounds Initiative” which helps preserve the world’s rainforests and the people and animals who live there.

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Twist Organics (store locations at drinktwist.com)
A bottle of Gatorade containing 30 grams of sugar may be what the doctor ordered for a prolonged period of exercise (ie: a marathon), but when you’re headed to your Saturday morning boot camp class, all of that sugar begins to add up. But when plain water just seems too boring and Crystal Light seems too artificial, a bottle of Twist Organics is the perfect antidote to your liquid blues. Available in a variety of flavors, (including Mandarin White Tea, Pomegranate Blueberry, West Indies Lime, Mango Acai, Marionberry, Mandarin, Peach and Lemon,) Twist is USDA certified organic and contains no carbonation or artificial ingredients. Instead of aspartame, Twist is flavored with fruit essences and organic agave, which will leave you feeling light and ready to sweat. We’ll take it!

ActivWater (store locations at activwater.com)
Similar to Twist (it’s actually made by the same company!), ActiVWater comes in a variety of fruit flavors and is packed with vitamins, antioxidants and electrolytes. We found this water to be better for longer workouts because of the electrolytes. All of the flavors use Erythritol which is a 100% natural sweetener, giving it no icky chemical aftertaste. Each flavor has a different function. Available in Wake Up, Reist, Power, Focus, Energy, Balance, Vigor and Essential-E, there really is one for any need. Our favorites were Focus (with its Dragonfruit flavor and packed with vitamin’s A, C, B3, B5, B6, B12, E and Zinc as well as Gingko Biloba, known as a natural memory and concentration enhancer, it’s perfect for those last few bicep curls that require the utmost attention) and Wake Up (with its Orange Mango flavor and Vitamin C, caffeine and green tea extract, it’s perfect for a little pre-workout pick-me-up).

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PureSport Recovery (10 packets for $34.99, puresportshop.com)
This was our favorite pick for thirst quenching and replacing electrolytes. The ideal mix of carbohydrate and protein make for the perfect pre or post workout fuel. Your body will be able to use energy better because of the speed at which the fuel from the carbohydrate will get to your muscles. By reducing muscle damage, this drink will help you work your muscles harder and longer with less recovery time! The whey protein isolate, antioxidants, electrolytes and natural sugars combine in four flavors: Lemon Lime, Grape, Fruit Punch and Banana Berry. Note: Fruit Punch was our fave!

EBOOST Daily Health Booster (20 packets for $28.00, eboost.com)
This fizzy vitamin packed drink mix comes in Natural Orange, Pink Lemonade and Acai Pomegranate flavors. Full of Vitamins C and B12, copper, zinc and potassium, this is the perfect thing to throw in your gym bag to spice up your water. You don’t even have to stir the powder! Just empty the contents of the packet into your water, let the foam settle and drink up all of the benefits of this vitamin packed mix. EBOOST increases energy, immunity, recovery and focus. The green tea and vitamin B 12 serve up energy, while vitamin C, zinc, selenium and copper boost immunity. Potassium and sodium replenish electrolytes to aid in recovery and vitamin B 12, green tea and 5-HTP enhance focus, making EBOOST the perfect addition to any workout.

Prefer smoothies? Try this one!

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