Klean Athlete’s Whey Protein + Recovery Supplements are Travel-Friendly Perfection (And Taste Great!)
Klean Athlete’s whey protein is making me a very happy, recovered athlete right now. You all know — especially if you read Fuel Your Ride — that I’m a huge fan of eating real, whole foods. But… I’m also on the road a lot, putting in big hours on the bike or on the trails, running through airports, Home Alone style, and generally on-the-go for mealtime more than I’d prefer. And I KNOW that’s not just me. So when the option is between skipping a recovery meal, especially during a serious training phase like I’m in now, or drinking a protein shake or recovery drink, you can damn well bet that I’m going to be doing that.
OK, second confession: I’ve been really bad about drinking enough water on big training days lately, so the other bonus with having a protein shake (read: protein powder + water, no additions, not a smoothie!) means I drink an extra 20 ounces of water without noticing.
ANYWAY. I was turned on to Klean Athlete by ultrarunner Jonathan Levitt, who we had on the podcast recently. I was searching for a Vitamin D supplement and he told me about their NSF-rating on all of their products, and added that while I should try the vitamin D, I would be really impressed with the taste of the chocolate protein powder. Game on.
After a few weeks of sipping, I’m a fan. It’s pretty darn good as far as protein powders go—and I’m really picky. I’m also a weirdo who most often drinks it mixed with water and nothing else, so it HAS to taste good. (The only alternative I really do is blending with a couple handfuls of frozen blueberries. I’m not fancy. I also have been mixing it into plain yogurt with blueberries.)
With some current injury stuff, I’ve needed to up my protein intake, and this is simply the easiest way to do it. It’s easy to drink immediately post-workout, especially when I have another session later that day and recovery with protein is vital. I’ve been coaching a TON of camps lately, which means my training load has been high but my time to recover and get in a full meal has been more limited, so I’ve been really happy to have it with me.
I love that it’s so well-tested (NSF), the price isn’t ridiculous, the powder is more… powdery, versus those kind of granulated protein powders. All in all, thumbs way up.
OK, two major bonuses between the sizes from a travel-perspective, too:
The single-serve packets are SO EASY
When you’re on the road a lot, whether it’s full-time travel where you’re gone for weeks or if you just have a long ride home from the trailhead and often forget to pack a recovery snack (raises hand), the single-serves are great to stash in all of your bags, backpacks and cars. That way, all you need is a water bottle and poof! Instant recovery.
The full-size whey isolate options come in BAGS
I love that the full-size protein and recovery powders come in huge bags versus huge containers, for three reasons. One, for traveling, it is SO much easier to fit a bag of protein into a suitcase vs a huge tub, especially since the tubs always come half full anyway! So much wasted space. Two, it’s way more eco-friendly. Three, for pantry storage, it takes up less shelf space to stash a bag in our cabinets (or if I was super Pinterest-y, I would easily be able to decant the bag into a big labeled Mason jar, which, I admit, is my dream).