How to Eat for A Fast Recovery for Injured Runners

Even you are pro or newbie to running, getting injured is intensely frustrating because it will block your progress as well as take you more time to achieve your desired goals. Because of injuries like tendonitis, knee surgery or broken bones that prevent you running, I know that you will have some questions like ‘what should I do to recover quickly,' or ‘Do need to consume weight loss supplements during my waiting period?’.

Although research has proven that massage, icing, or resting are effective in treating your injuries, you need to know that your body will recover from inside. Therefore, a proper diet will be required if you want to fulfill a successful treatment to make your wounds be healed faster.

Hence, today article will give you several useful tips on how to eat for a fast recovery for injured runners and answer some queries related to this topic.

How To Eat For A Quick Recovery

The most basic rule is to provide your body with adequate nutrition to help it function correctly and smoothly if you want to shorten the healing process. Instead of consuming fast food, please offer your body a balanced amount of the following nutrients.

#1. Choose Foods Which Are Rich In Vitamins

It is highly recommended to take colorful vegetables and fruits instead of vitamin supplements. Inflammation, one of the factors contributing to slow down your healing process, could be knocked by veggies and fruits. To make it easier, I suggest squeezing the juices from fruits or make tasty smoothies.

There are two kinds of vitamins that you should add into your diet even when you are not hurt – they are vitamin A and vitamin C.

Vitamin A – A Virus & Infection Fighter

Figure 1. You can make a spinach smoothie to refresh your diet (Photo credit:

In fact, vitamin A could actively support your body in producing white blood cells, which is often known as the injury keepers. The origin of this name lies in the benefit that it could bring you. According to scientists, the white blood cells are effective in combating viruses and infection as well.

Some kinds of vegetables that you should consume are:

  • Spinach
  • Swiss chard
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Sunflower seeds

Vitamin C – A Protein Builder & Internal Protector

As a substance is soluble in water, vitamin C is the one that could not be produced by our body. Hence, I advise you to take those kinds of food containing a high number of it on a regular basis. Remember that vitamin C is the main element producing protein for the skin, blood vessels, ligaments, tendons, and scar tissue.

Figure 2. Add more peppers into your diet to consume more vitamin C (Photo credit: Bart Heird via / CC BY-NC-ND)

Regarding healing, an internal protection, which fights free radicals in your body will be provided by vitamin C. In fact, it could come from the chemicals, intense workout, or food that you consume every day.

Some kinds of fruits and vegetables that you should eat are

  • Broccoli
  • Peppers
  • Kiwi
  • Citrus fruits

#2. Choose Foods Containing Minerals & Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3s – Inflammation and swelling prevention

Omega-3s, particularly Omega-3 fatty acids, play an important role in healing injuries. According to recent research, scientists have shown that the inflammation could be prevented from your daily run or your injury by omega-3s.

Figure 3. Walnuts – Omega 3 fatty acids rich food (Photo credit:

Also, there is no need to take other kinds of pain killers as Omega-3 fatty acids help you to protect your injury from inflammation and swelling. Hence, the recovery period will be speeded up.

Some types of foods come highly recommended

  • Walnuts
  • Flaxseeds
  • Salmon – You should not remove salmon skin since it has the highest proportion of Omega-3 fatty acids

Zinc – The essential of tissue

Zinc is one of the bare essentials to your injury treatment because the human tissues contain this substance. The primary responsibility of zinc is to help your body use consumed proteins and fats to fasten the healing and growth of your injured tissue. Similar to vitamin A, it supports your immune system to avoid viruses and infections as well.

Figure 4. The most popular protein – chicken – is a rich source of zinc (Photo credit: Wuest-Nigel via via CC BY)

Here are some suggested sorts of foods

  • Chicken
  • Seeds
  • Nuts
  • Oysters

#3. Consume more protein for a fast recovery

Figure 5. Hummus is very rich in protein (Photo credit:

To shorten your healing process, extra protein is required. After getting into your body, protein will turn into amino acids that are necessary to get your injured muscles recovered. The adequate amount of protein that should eat on a daily basis is around 20 – 30 grams each meal.

You should consider the below suggestions to consume enough quantity of protein

  • Firm tofu
  • Hummus
  • Fish
  • Poultry
  • Cottage cheese

Frequently asked questions

Here are some common thoughts that people often popularly misunderstand.

Question 1: Will I get fat if I must stop running for a long time?

The answer is ‘NO.' One thing you need to do is not to overeat! Before eating, always ask yourself ‘Does my body need more calories?’. My advice is to maintain the balanced diet while you cannot run.

Question 2: Will my muscles change into fat?

No. Instead of changing into fat, they will shrink. When you recover and start doing the exercise again, your muscles will gradually get into shape.

Question 3: Why does malnutrition make you damaged?

According to recent research, malnutrition could slow your healing process down. Again, try to have a healthy diet and provide your body with adequate nutrients it requires.


Those are three main tips on how to eat for a fast recovery for injured runners. Hope that you found it interesting and useful. If you have any questions, leave a comment below. Last, do not forget to like and share article today with your friends.

Sara Smith

My name is Sara Smith, the proud owner of the blog and the writer of all the articles that you can see on this website. It is my goal to share my knowledge to all of you and to provide valuable learnings in one way or another.

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