How to make a protein shake and recover quickly

Learn how to make a protein shake to boost recovery time
March 21, 2014

Have you ever felt a bit stiff or jaded after a long run or training session? You know, that feeling when you’re walking around like Frankenstein due to a case of the DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). Well, you can actually do something to prevent this before you put your feet up and congratulate yourself on a job well done: drink a protein shake.

I used to think that protein shakes were for people looking to build up muscle. But a couple of years ago, I discovered it wasn’t just gym users who might benefit from a post-training session recovery protein shake, but trail runners, hikers, cyclists - anyone who’s pushed their body hard and needs to repair the damage to their muscles.

Unfortunately, I learned the importance of recovery shakes the hard way - during multi-stage ultra marathon races taking place in the jungle, desert and mountains.  As someone who’s quite competitive, I quickly understood that if I didn’t recover in time for the next stage, I would lose my place on the podium. And on the few occasions I didn’t listen to the advice I’m about to give you, I suffered!

Eat within 20 minutes of finishing the race or training session

There is no point in waiting until dinner to replenish your body with the protein and carbohydrates you used during your long run/hike. The magic time to eat is within 20 minutes of finishing your race/training session - which is where the protein shake comes in.

There are a bewildering array of protein powders on the shelves these days - so many it’s almost impossible to choose. But with a little imagination, you can save a bit of money with a DIY protein shake.  So here's perhaps the simplest protein/recovery shake you'll ever find.

Prep time: 1 minute

Ingredients - Protein shake:

  • 4 tablespoons of Nesquick (Banana or chocolate are very tasty)
  • 4 tablespoons of skim milk
  • 1 pinch of table salt

1. Grab a shaker or drinks bottle. Put a little water in the bottle to stop the power sticking to the bottom.

2. Put 4 tablespoons of Nesquick into the bottle. Add some more water and stir.

3. Put 4 tablespoons of skim milk into the bottle.

4. Add pinch of salt

5. If you like your drinks cold (and you're at home) add an ice cube or two.

6. Shake well for 30 seconds and then drink!

If you have a DIY protein shake recipe you’d like to share with us, please let us know in the comments box below.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

  • Salvy Blaze

    uhh… Really? Thats your “protein” recipe for recovery?!

  • Salvy Blaze

    cant even mix that you N00b

  • Salvy Blaze

    Let’s revamp your DIY shake and actually add some protein to it… How about 10 ounces of skim milk, 1 scoop of ON Whey chocolate protein, a pinch of salt (but absolutely unnecessary) and an ice cube. Shake like hell in a shaker cup or blend and VOILA, 30+ grams of muscle sparing protein.

  • Vernon Yost

    I think you need to rethink your formulation.

  • Bill M.

    somehow, I think 4 tablespoons of whatever…. and a shot of water does not make a shake… maybe if you added 8 to 16 oz. of whatever it might work a bit better…. I just mix two scoops of a good quality protein whey and 16 oz. of cold water a few minutes after workout… does fine… stir it with a spoon in a plastic glass, no need for shakers or all this other stuff….. at age 70, I am still trying to get back in those old green Marine Utilities… (very hard job!!)

  • Charles

    There’s only 2 grams of protein in this recipe, and that’s from the milk.

    An equal amount of whey powder from Optimum Nutrition, mixed with water, contains 26 grams of protein. All you’re making here is a carb-filled goop. It’s very disappointing to find this kind of misinformation here. Honestly, I’m surprised this “nutrition advice” has not been deleted already.

  • Family G

    It’s “Powder” not “Power” Proof read!


Tobias Mews

Trail Running, Ultramarathons, Triathlons, Mountain Biking, Adventure Racing
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