Nutrition is the key to weight management, we all know that. The proper meal composition after an intense workout can help you maximize the effectiveness and the gains from the workout!
This is because intense workouts deplete our bodies of glucose (energy) and cause minor muscle damage. By replacing and rebuilding our muscles after a workout we increase our capacity to exercise!
The main building blocks to achieve this are protein and carbohydrates.
This applies to men and women alike! One of the main things we need to replenish is carbohydrates which are our main component of energy.
You simply must replenish these stores that get drained during a strenuous workout. Not only do you need carbohydrates to replenish the energy stores lost but you need enough carbs to induce a significant insulin release.
Insulin release, which occurs after a meal to regulate blood sugar, causes our muscles to absorb protein more effectively therefore helping repair and grow muscles more efficiently.
Research indicates that we need between 0.8g to 1.2g of carbohydrates per kilogram of body weight post-workout (150lb person = 54.4g to 81.6g carbs) after a workout. If you are worried about fat gain, stick to the lower end of this spectrum (0.8g per kg bodyweight).
We all realize we need protein to repair and build muscle after an intense workout. Research has shown that after a workout we need anywhere from 0.2g to 0.4g of protein per kilogram of body weight (150lb person = 13.5g to 27.2g protein) with at least 3-4g of leucine (Stark et al 2012) to maximize our gains!
Finally, your post-workout meal needs to be relatively low fat. This is because fat slows down the absorption of nutrients in the stomach (crabs and protein) that you want delivered to the muscles quickly after your workout!
You need to remember to consume this meal immediately after your workout! The sooner the better when it comes to a post-workout meal.
Eating a meal immediately after a workout is better than 30 minutes after a workout which is better than 3 hours after workout; the sooner the better!
I would recommend eating your post-workout meal within at least an hour of your workout!
We all want to get the most out of our workout! You put the time and energy into being at the gym so you should refuel properly afterwards to get the best possible gains! Take the time to replenish properly! Make sure you eat and grow!
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