Post workout nutrition is important because you are spending the time and energy to exercise, so it makes sense that you eat the right foods post workout to accelerate your results.
The reason for this is because once you have finished an intense workout, your muscle tissue actually starts to break down. Consuming a quickly digestible post-workout meal as soon as you can after training will counteract this process and maximize your potential muscle gains.
What you are aiming to do is speed up the muscle recovery process by following each workout with proper post workout nutrition.
This meal alone will significantly improve your results in the least possible amount of time. This is also the meal that most people skip! Next to breakfast, this is the one meal you never want to miss.
Your goal here is to choose a meal that contains quickly digestible carbs as well as quickly digestible protein. This will speed up the process of muscular repair and will enhance muscle growth as it is much easier to digest.
An ideal post workout meal generally contains between 300 to 500 calories to get the best results, depending on your current calorie intake. Your post-workout meal should also contain between 2-4 parts carbs to 1 part protein.
This meal should also be very low in fat because fat slows the absorption of your post work out meal which is exactly what you don't want to happen - you want your meal to digest as quickly as possible to stimulate muscle growth which in turn burns more fat.
Some good post workout nutrition meals may include the following ingredients:
- Frozen fruit, such as bananas
- Pineapples or raisins
- Quickly digestible protein - the best source of this is if you buy a quality whey protein isolate
- Fat free or low fat yogurt
- Natural maple syrup
An ideal post workout nutrition meal is the simple smoothie. Try placing 2 frozen bananas, 1/2 a cup of mixed berries, some skim milk and a scoop of chocolate flavored protein powder in a blender and blend until smooth. Of course you can vary the ingredients, changing them to suit your tastes.
Another option if you feel that whole foods are too "heavy" for consumption directly after a workout is to take supplements.
For best results, combine the following in a large container with 32 ounces of water:
-40 grams of whey protein
-50 to 60 grams of sugar
-5 grams of creatine
-5 grams of arginine
-5 to 10 grams of glutamine
Sip this mixture throughout your workout and when you reach about half way through your workout add another 16 ounces of water. Adding these additional fluids will help rehydrate your body and increase your blood volume, encouraging a better pump while you train.
Many people don't feel like eating after an intense workout, so having an easily-absorbed meal such as a fruit and protein smoothie is quick and convenient and you won't feel like you have to force it down. Your smoothie can be made up prior to your workout and stored in the refrigerator, ready for you to drink it straight after.
One thing you may have noticed about what has been written here about your post workout meals is that they differ significantly to the requirements for your regular meals. In fact, they have the opposite composition but this is because they have a specific purpose and that is to promote muscle repair and growth during a time when what you consume will be quickly absorbed.
Post workout meals also allow you to satisfy those sweet cravings you have had all day without going to your middle!
Post workout nutrition as you can see is an extremely important aspect of building muscle and losing fat. What you eat after a workout should be considered just as, if not more important as your regular daily meals and should never, ever be skipped.
Contact Bruno at Performance Fitness in Redlands, Ca today for a free consultation to see what the best post workout options for your fitness goals are.