top of page
  • Writer's picturedirtyheart

Recovery Wars: Making the most out of your recovery shake. Seven recovery products on South African

The field of sports nutrition and recovery recipes as evolved over the last few years and it would seem the powers that be have come close to perfecting the formula. We’ve come a long way with flavour, but we’ve come even further with our understanding of sports nutrition as a whole. Such as, exactly how much protein and carbohydrate are necessary to recover from exercise, when it should be consumed, what types are best, and how carbs and protein can do their job even better when paired with other nutrients. The information goes beyond knowing just what “works.” We know what works! We want to know what works best. What is optimal?

What are the Optimal Amounts of Carbohydrate and

Protein Post-Exercise?

For proteins, the fastest and most effective protein is, and always has been, whey protein. Whey is a high-quality dairy protein with greater quantities of leucine than other proteins. Whey protein contains 9 – 12% of its amino acids as leucine. You may have seen different types of whey, such as isolate or concentrate. These two terms simply refer to the process of obtaining whey from milk – it is either isolated or concentrated. Isolate contains 90% protein (with the rest being carbohydrate, fat, minerals, etc.) and concentrate contains 80% protein. Whey hydrolysate can come from either a protein isolate or protein concentrate. Hydrolysate means that some of the proteins have already begun to be broken down so that they are easier (and faster) to digest.

When is the optimal time to consume this?

As soon as possible. Really, as soon as is reasonable. Don’t stress out about it, but make it point of consideration. Definitely within 2 hours, as research has shown that muscles begin to desensitize at that point. The rate of muscle glycogen synthesis is 45% slower at 2 hours than immediately post-exercise in response to the same quantity of carbohydrate. Desensitization is actually occurring within minutes following exercise, but the process is gradual.

Protein timing has a similar pattern. The difference between consuming protein immediately or 3 hours post-exercise is the difference between either repairing damaged muscle or not aiding the process at all. Delaying protein intake following exercise up to 2 hours can still increase protein synthesis, yet the increase immediately post-exercise will be better than if 2 hours delayed.

Protein and carbohydrate should also be consumed together. In an investigation comparing carbohydrate + protein compared to carbohydrate alone, the athletes receiving the carbohydrate + protein supplement had 55% greater performance in a subsequent bout of exercise than those receiving only carbohydrate. Moreover, protein and carbohydrate co-ingestion versus carbohydrate only can reduce muscle damage by as much as 83% in response to cardiovascular exercise.

So what recovery products are available to the South African market?

We got our hands on seven sports recovery drinks and compared them. For the most part they all seem to provide the correct variety and ingredients needed to sufficiently recover following heavy sessions or races. You may have to consider other factors like price, taste, and some micro ingredients and overall just general preference.

32Gi Recover

900g tub - RRP: R353.50


  • High quality protein to assist with muscle recovery

  • Carbohydrates needed to assist with glycogen replenishment and blood sugar stabilization.

  • Contains vitamin C to assist with immune system recovery post exercise.

  • Pea Protein isolate is an intermediate fast digesting protein for complete absorption & stability

  • Naturally high in Glutamine

  • Gluten, Soy, Egg and Lactose Free

  • Excellent Amino Acid profile

  • Digestive Friendly

  • Vegetarian Suitable

  • GMO Free

  • Compliant with WADA standards

  • Kosher / Halaal Certified

Chocolate Flavour:

Sugar, pea protein, glucose, cocoa powder (minimum 7% cocoa solids), palm oil, vanilla, emulsifiers, natural aroma, stabilising agent, acidity regulator, anti-caking agent, anti-oxidant , stabilising agent.


HIGH5 Protein Recovery

1.6kg tub RRP: R995.00

Post exercise drink with 18g whey protein isolate

• The Pro’s drink of choice for after exercise • High in whey protein isolate (which contains BCAA’s). • Contributes to muscle growth and muscle maintenance1 • Promotes recovery of normal muscle function2 • Suitable for vegetarians

Protein Recovery is a delicious tasting protein drink. The ingredients used in this scientifically formulated blend of protein and carbs promote recovery of normal muscle function² after exercise and contribute to the growth and maintenance of muscle mass¹. Muscles become sore and stiff when they are stressed during exercise. The depletion of muscle glycogen (muscle carb stores) can impair muscle function resulting in fatigue and reduced exercise performance. The unique forms of protein and carbohydrate in Protein Recovery are chosen to ensure you recover after intense long lasting exercise² and turn up ready to perform at your next training session.

There is no need for a shaker, Protein Recovery mixes easily with water or milk. Consume one serving of Protein Recovery in the first hour after hard exercise. You can also take another one or two servings later in the day or just before you go to bed. You can also use milk substitutes such as coconut, soy or rice milk. You can also mix it with water should you want to. As part of our Drugs Free policy, we hold stock of products tested for banned substances. If you require tested products then please select “WADA tested” product. This will be shipped with a certificate from our accredited lab. Note, we do not use banned ingredients and have never had a failed test.


USN Pro Recover

1kg tub RRP:R280


Pro Recover is the ultimate recovery protein shake designed to replace lost glycogen, amino acids and electrolytes rapidly after intense exercise and protects existing muscle from breakdown to restore amino acids. Pro Recover contains premium quality whey protein, which is absorbed quickly to maintain lean muscle mass and prevent breakdown. Pro Recovery is free from colourants, preservatives and artificial sweeteners.


ƒOptimised muscle recovery following exercise. Rapid electrolyte, glycogen and amino acid replacement. May help reduce exercise-related muscle cramping and stiffness. ƒƒIncreased muscle recovery rate between training sessions. Anti-catabolic amino acids to prevent muscle breakdown during intensive exercise.


Hammer Recoverite

32 serving tub RRP: R610.00


Recoverite is our best-selling product for a reason. It provides exactly what your body needs to reap the most from your activity—a 3:1 ratio of complex carbohydrates to premium whey protein isolate, critical amino acids, and a full spectrum of electrolytes.

It mixes easily into a delicious drink you’ll look forward to after every session.


Maltodextrin – A high-glycemic index (GI) complex carbohydrate, ideal for providing fast-acting, long-lasting energy during exercise and for replenishing the body’s energy (glycogen) stores after exercise.

Whey Protein Isolate – The most bioavailable of all protein sources and the superior source of amino acids for muscle tissue repair and immune system support. Whey protein isolate also provides potent anti-inflammatory benefits.

L-Glutamine – The most abundant amino acid in the muscles, L-glutamine plays a significant role in the glycogen synthesis process, and helps repair and rebuild muscle tissue. It has also been shown to help raise bodily levels of glutathione, the most important antioxidant for immune system health. Glutamine also contributes to growth hormone release and digestive health.

Chromemate® brand chromium polynicotinate – This trace mineral helps regulate blood sugar and plays a vital role in the synthesis of glucose, fatty acids, and amino acids. During recovery, chromium facilitates carbohydrate storage (glycogen synthesis).

L-Carnosine – One of the most versatile and beneficial nutrients available. It buffers lactic acid during exercise and offers antioxidant support.

Full-spectrum electrolyte profile – The complete profile of sodium, chloride, calcium, magnesium, and potassium helps replenish depleted mineral stores.

Manganese – This trace mineral plays an important role in the production of superoxide dismutase (SOD), a powerful antioxidant.

Glycine – This amino acid is beneficial for aiding with muscle tissue repair, protecting collagen in joints, and reducing joint pain. Additionally, glycine has a naturally sweet taste, contributing to Recoverite’s delicious flavor.

Xylitol – This natural sweetener, found in a variety of fibrous fruits and vegetables, promotes oral health, as it does not ferment and support the acid-producing bacteria that cause tooth decay. NOTE: It is believed that xylitol is unsafe for consumption by dogs; therefore, we do not recommend you feed your dog any xylitol-containing products, including HEED or Recoverite.

Stevia – This is the extract (steviosides) from the leaves of Stevia rebaudiana, a plant native to subtropical and tropical Central and South America. Stevia is non-caloric, and does not affect blood sugar levels. Like xylitol, stevia does not support acid-producing bacteria responsible for tooth decay.


Biogen Recovergen

1kg tub RRP : R279.95

Informed sport certified. Alpha-lipoic acid. 4:1 carb:protein ratio. Whey protein hydrolysate. High in bcaas. The 30-45 minute window period after strenuous training or events is a crucial time during which the body aims to recover as quickly as possible. The body’s natural instinct to immediately replace muscle glycogen (our first and main source of energy) means that it will use whatever nutrients are available, and will break down muscle tissue for this energy, resulting in muscle wastage.

Biogen Recovergen supplies a carefully formulated combination of ingredients that will help mend and build muscles, whilst regenerating energy stores as fast as possible. This upgraded formulation provides the scientifically recommended 4:1 ratio of carbohydrate to protein, through fast-acting sources such as maltodextrin and hydrolysed whey protein. Biogen Recovergen is also high in Branched Chained Amino Acids (BCAAs), and has been formulated with antioxidants, electrolytes, vitamins and Alpha-lipoic acid, providing a good, compact recovery solution for use after strenuous training/events.

Recommended use: Add ±3 level scoops (95g) to 500 ml of cool water and shake vigorously until dissolved. It is recommended that the powder be added to half the water first, after which it should be shaken vigorously for 10 to 15 seconds before adding the other half, and again shaken vigorously for a further 15 to 20 seconds. Have one serving within 20 – 30 minutes after training or an event to promote recovery. A second serving can be taken if your training/event was strenuous and exceeded 2 hours – have the second serving an hour later.


Evox recovery fuel

1kg tub RRP: R215.00

EVOX PEAK PERFORMANCE RECOVERY FUEL offers the most advanced and scientifically developed high performance, recovery focused ingredients to sustain and accelerate the post-exercise adaptation of PEAK PERFORMANCE athletes who take part in ultra-endurance and multi-day events

The post-activity nutrient requirements in all performance athletes should be met with only the correct nutrients, in the correct quantities to accelerate and support total energy and system recovery. The process of recovery after intense activity is complex, with multiple systems vying for vital nutrients, as well as a heightened metabolic rate, increased thermal temperatures, muscle nutrient requirements and glycogen replenishment demands. In this instance, only the most precisely formulated recovery drink is needed.

In order to minimise the degree of muscle breakdown after an intense, long-duration, multi-day or multi-stage events and training, the correct ratio of select proteins is an absolute must. EVOX PEAK PERFORMANCE RECOVERY FUEL offers fast-digesting, highly bio-available Whey Protein Concentrate, Whey Protein Isolate and Whey Protein Hydrolysate to quickly saturate the muscle with recovery-focused amino acids. Recovery is further optimised with the addition of a premium Micellar Casein to slow the digestion and improve total nutrient absorption.

Muscle and liver glycogen stores need to be replenished rapidly, not only to ensure adequate energy loading, but also to protect muscle tissue mass. These stores act as the energy reservoirs during intense physical activity, and they continue to release the glycogen (fuel) needed to sustain output. The carbohydrates used to formulate EVOX PEAK PERFORMANCE RECOVERY FUEL consist of an optimised ratio of fast acting long-chain glucose polymers and simple sugars for rapid and sustained energy replacement with effective, measurable results.

Essential electrolytes and phosphates are included in EVOX PEAK PERFORMANCE RECOVERY FUEL, at the correct quantities to improve hydration levels and prevent and minimize the occurrence of cramping, and to improve muscle performance levels.


Cadence REVIVE

910g tub RRP : R490.00

Help Prevent Excessive Muscle Damage, Fatigue and Exercise Related Immune Suppression

High intensity or resistance training can result in greater muscle tissue damage, requiring a higher concentration of protein to halt catabolism and accelerate muscle regeneration. Revive provides the ideal formulation to prevent excessive muscle damage, fatigue and immune suppression.

Ideal product for use after racing, prolonged training sessions or resistance training

• Promote muscle recovery & hypertrophy • Oxidise fats during subsequent exercise • Reduce oxidative stress and tissue damage • Maximise recovery & improve immune function • Stimulate muscle anabolism & improve endurance performance

Optimal carbohydrate and protein blend to maximise glycogen synthesis rate and promote muscle recovery and hypertrophy. Mixed carbohydrate / protein drinks reduce exercise related muscle damage and catabolism, improve the rate of recovery and increase the ability to oxidise fats during subsequent exercise.

Added leucine to stimulate muscle anabolism and improve endurance performance. Additional taurine to improve exercise performance and reduce exercise induced muscle damage. Additional branched chain amino acids and glutamine maximise recovery and improve immune function. Alpha-lipoic Acid reduces oxidative stress and tissue damage caused by prolonged exercise. Balanced electrolyte replacement formula.

bottom of page