The countdown to the summer Olympics is on, and hopeful athletes are preparing for what could be one of the biggest moments in their careers. For one young gymnast on the U.S. Olympic team, chocolate milk is part of her secret to success.

Seventeen-year old gymnast Alexandra “Aly” Raisman has been waiting for her chance to win the gold. And, through the long hours of sweat and hard work, she has consistently depended on chocolate milk to help her recover after training 35 hours each week. It helps her be ready for the next workout.

“Chocolate milk is important to me because it is scientifically proven to be the best recovery drink that you can have after your workout, especially for me because I train so many hours a day,” Raisman said in a Yahoo! Sports video, seen below. “It’s really important for me to replenish my muscles.”

Raisman credits the nutritional makeup of chocolate milk.

“It has the best combination of carbohydrates and protein. I know a lot of other athletes that do it. I definitely feel like it makes a big difference if I have chocolate milk after I work out,” she said.

In the video, Raisman’s mother, Lynn, points out other foods that help her daughter stay Olympic-ready. Among those options: yogurt.   

“We just try to make sure we have a lot of good choices for her so she will feel ready to go,” the proud mother said.

Recent studies support Raisman’s decision to turn to chocolate milk after training. According to one study published in the Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, runners who refueled with fat-free chocolate milk instead of a carbohydrate-only beverage performed better than competitors who didn’t. Read more. A new campaign by the Milk Processor Educator Program also featured other elite athletes, including Olympic speed skater Apolo Anton Ohno, former Olympic swimmer Dara Torres, and IRONMAN world champion Mirinda Carfrae, who turn to the dairy drink for their post-workout routine.