Whole grain banana pancake topped with yogurt, mixed berries, and strawberry coulis

Pumpkin pancake topped with berries, strawberry sauce (made with real strawberries), and vanilla yogurt

When I work with endurance athletes I am commonly asked “What should I eat after my run (insert other endurance event) for recovery?”  When I tell them “Food.” it is often met with confusion because they are usually referring to a recovery shake or bar.  In reality while these recovery shakes or bars a fine, they more convenient forms of the nutrients you can get from foods in a healthy diet.   The first thing that should come to mind when refueling should be carbohydrates, which as we know are in many of the foods we eat.  

Carbohydrate use increases as workouts become longer, more intense, or if you have multiple workouts a day. Depletion of carbohydrates and glycogen stores leads to fatigue, therefor replenishment is crucial to recovery. Athletes should consume a meal containing between 1-1.5 grams of carb per kilogram body weight soon after a workout. The important thing to focus on is keeping the ratio of protein to carbohydrate a 1:4 ratio while keeping the fat low. For exceptionally long and hard workout athletes may need to have a second or third recovery meal, eaten every 1-2 hours for 4 hours.  So…that sounds very complicated, but in reality it can be very tasty.  It can even taste like pancakes, even I dare say “Post Workout Recovery Pancakes.”

First, I am particularly fond of these pumpkin because not only are they nutritionally superior to other pancakes but they can also be frozen and reheater later while still maintaining quality.  


Second, why pancakes for endurance event recovery?

These can be used for athletes AND their families. They fit both the pre and post workout nutritional needs of athletes and can also be used in a healthy, balanced diet for a family. This is done by selecting healthier ingredients to control the carbohydrates, protein, fat, and calories. With proper education and planning there is no reason athletes cannot share the same meals as the rest of the family and achieve a proper pre-workout and recovery meal. Families who eat together tend to be healthier. Healthy families make healthy communities. Eat well. Be well. Live well.

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The same recipe can make waffles too





2 large eggs

2 cups 100% whole wheat flour

1 3/4 cups skim milk

1 tbsp sugar

4 tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp salt

half cup canned pumpkin

1 tsp vanilla


Beat eggs til fluffy.  Then beat in the rest of the ingredients til smooth.  Pre-heat skillet so it is hot and water will sizzle if dripped onto the skillet.  Use one oz ladle to pour batter onto skillet.  Makes about 20, 4 inch pancakes.  If they are sticking to the skillet you can use just a bit of olive oil.  Preferred topping: any berry puree or fruit topping.



  • Kim

    yum – thanks

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