I am a high school cross-country runner and I have been on the paleo diet for about 1 month now. Every single weekend, I feel week and desperate for carbohydrates. I understand that I need to restore my glycemic store, but I don't know how to do it. Please, could you give me suggestions of the healthiest high glucose, low fructose to eat after a hard workout? BTW I don't like drinking any wacked-out energy drinks or protein smoothies and I am open to eating any grains if need be.
sweet potatoes/ yams will probably be your best bet. You can slice them, boil them til their soft, peel off the skins, and mash them up with a ton of good butter. I think you'll be in heaven.
Also, paleo does not equal low carb so there's no reason you shouldn't be eating more carbs each day. White rice should also be fine for you. There's been some debate in the paleo community about rice but if you're a high school distance runner I'm sure you're the type of person that would have no problem at all.
As for high glucose/low fructose, starches are literally all glucose, chained together.
potatoes and scrambled eggs or rice and eggs both work great after a hard workout.
Sucrose is excellent for rapidly restoring glycogen (stored energy) burned by running long distances. Gatorade has plenty of sucrose. It is not paleo by any shot, but you have to simply accept that fact that your best bet of rapidly restoring glycogen is with a fairly well-tested and accepted solution. Having a small Gatorade after a huge run could very well prevent your carb cravings.
I wouldn't suggest high fructose corn syrup to restore glycogen. That stuff is harmful and to my knowledge may not perform the same.
The other solution is probably to binge on starchy carbs. You'll restore glycogen in the most common places (e.g. liver) before you put it on as fat.
Please know that I am 100% pro paleo. I am simply giving the best answer to my knowledge.
I too am an endurance athletes (Long course triathlons) so deal with a little bit of the same issues that you do. Like everyone before me has said, sweet potatoes, potatoes, and all types of squashes and pumpkins are good choices. Also, include plenty of fruit. Just make sure all your carbs don't come purely from one source.
I'm looking forward to the other answers that get posted here as well!
eat plenty of fruit and potatoes preferably white potatoes. On days you run make sure to get at least 300g carbs, maybe more if you are running multiple hours and at high intensities.
What your doing right now is destroying yo health. Fructose isn't a poison, get over your fear of it.
Any of the high carb vegetables like sweet potatoes, butternut squash, pumpkin, acorn squash or yams might work for your after race meals. I wasn't Paleo when I ran high school cross country, but I put these away all week long along with a lot of good old russet potatoes. Also, I wouldn't shy away from fruits unless you know you have blood sugar issues when eating fruit. If you aren't sure or you're concerned about insulin response to the fructose, chose fruits that are low on the glycemic index and have a low glycemic load, like most berries and cantelope. If these suggestions don't work, you might consider adding in a little brown rice and seeing how your body reacts. I personally am not strict Paleo, but a "heavy leaner" . . . If your current Paleo diet isn't working for you, then you either need to find new foods within the Paleo frame-work that will work (like you are trying to do), or let up a little and try a bit of grain, legume or dairy (depending on your health status and why you chose to become Paleo in the first place). I personally would continue with the first approach if you are up for it, then try the second approach if the first doesn't work.
Jamie Scott (That Paleo Guy) is an endurance athlete and did a 6 part series on high fat for cyclists. I know it's not cross country, but there is significant overlap.
Bone broth for post-workout 2 Answers