Post workout nutrition
Posted by Tia Patel | Feb-22-2021
Refueling after exercise gives your body the nutrients it needs to recover from the exertion of a workout whilst helping you build bigger, stronger muscles.That means being thoughtful about what you eat before and after exercising to help you maximise the benefits of all your hard work whether its at the gym, after a run or post hiit workout
So we’ve got everything you need to know about what to eat after a workout for recovery, what happens when you don’t eat after exercise and our top 5 snacks for muscle gain, weight loss and recovery.
What to eat after a workout
Getting in the right nutrients after exercise can help you rebuild your muscle proteins and glycogen stores. Here’s how protein and carbs are needed post workout to stimulate growth of new muscle.
Protein helps repair and build muscle - exercise triggers the breakdown of muscle protein. Consuming an adequate amount of protein after a workout gives your body the amino acids it needs to repair and rebuild these proteins. It also gives you the building blocks required to build new muscle tissue . It’s recommended that you consume 0.14–0.23 grams of protein per pound of body weight (0.3–0.5 grams/kg) very soon after a workout.
Carbs help with recovery - Your body’s glycogen stores are used as fuel during exercise, and consuming carbs after your workout helps replenish them. The rate at which your glycogen stores are used depends on the activity. For example, endurance sports (running) cause your body to use more glycogen than resistance training. Consuming 0.5–0.7 grams of carbs per pound (1.1–1.5 grams/kg) of body weight within 30 minutes after training results in proper glycogen resynthesis.
A post-workout meal with both protein and carbs will enhance glycogen storage and muscle protein synthesis. Consuming a ratio of 3:1 (carbs to protein) is a practical way to achieve this.
What happens if you don’t eat post workout
1. You’ll be sore
2. Your muscles won’t recover or repair as they should.
3. You might not be able to lift as heavy or have as much strength during your next session.
4. You won’t get the protein you need to recover
5. Your body won't store glycogen properly and you'll slow down protein synthesis, which your body needs to do to recover from muscle damage.
6. You’ll be tired.
7. You might get overuse injuries as your muscles struggle to repair. Add one of our best selling products to your recovery routine.
8. Not replenishing electrolytes and nutrients lost through sweat.
Read our guide to making your own sports drink to refuel and renergise
9. Potentially dehydrated from not drinking water with a snack or meal.
10. Your muscles will break down as a result of not being fuelled properly.
Best post workout snacks for muscle gain, weight loss and recovery
1. Bananas with peanut butter - The bananas provide you with carbohydrates, potassium and magnesium. These are important for recovering from your workout. The peanut butter contains essential proteins and fat. But make sure to use pure peanut butter – without additives like sugar or palm fat.
2. Trail mix/granola - Granola provides a mixture of healthy fats, carbs (from the oats) fiber and a good source protein. This is a great option for the journey home from the gym or if you’re in a rush.
3. Edamame - The green soybeans are very low in calories: 100 g of edamame have a mere 125 calories. Also, one serving of edamame provides you with nearly 15 g of protein.
4. Greek yogurt with berries - Greek yogurt has a high protein content: One container (200 g) contains 10 to 15 g of the macronutrient. Raspberries, strawberries and blueberries (fresh or frozen) are low calorie, low carb and rich in antioxidants.
5. Hardboiled eggs - Eggs provide all of the nine essential amino acids (also known as the building blocks of protein), making them an effective food for maintaining, building and repairing muscle.
Eating the right foods post workout are important to achieving your long-term fitness goals. It may be best to have a nutritional strategy as you find snacks that work best for you and your lifestyle. But don’t forget our nutritional rule - drink plenty of water!