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You’ve just finished an intense workout, and now you’re in your kitchen debating what to eat to replenish the nutrients your body needs to recharge. During a workout, your body burns both carbohydrates and protein, but how do you put those back into your body without ruining your entire training session?
In addition to taking dietary supplements specific to aiding post-workout performance, there are some specific “do’s and don’ts” to ensure you don’t undo your sweaty session.
If you are into adding supplements to your daily routine, check out www.reviewy.org to help determine which supplements are right for your life.
If not, check out these tips to help you on your path to workout wonder.
Post Workout Snacks – Do’s:
One unknown part of working out is that during an intense training session, your muscles undergo minuscule tearing and ripping.
This tearing is a necessary aspect of your workout as your body then uses proteins to rebuild and repair those muscles, allowing them to grow bigger and stronger.
Therefore, after a workout, protein is your best friend. Within 30 minutes after your workout, you should focus on a protein-packed snack. This could be a protein shake, a protein bar, or some other type of snack that has more protein than any other nutrient.
Giving your body that immediate protein boost will start the recovery process sooner, so you get more benefits from your workout.
Within about an hour and a half of your finished exercise, you should plan to eat a well-balanced meal. Giving yourself time after the workout to eat a protein filled snack gives your body the jolt it needs to start the repair process, but it will soon find itself needing other nutrients as well.
While you do not want to introduce too many carbs or fats into your body too early following your workout, eating about an hour and a half after your session gives your body time to focus on muscle repair first, and then go into helping your entire body recover.
Balancing healthy carbohydrates, like whole grains, green vegetables, and other fiber-rich foods with another small portion of protein will give your body the energy it needs to continue to recover.
Aside from the necessary nutrients already mentioned, drinking an all natural pre workout is another important component of pre workout nutrition.
Post Workout Snacks – Don’ts:
As your body is in an intense recovery period directly after a workout, eating carbohydrates too soon will signal your body to store them as fat for the next workout, which is the opposite of what you want.
One of the biggest post-workout mistakes is eating some form of heavy, carb-loaded snack in the guise of it being healthy. One of the most common, biggest offenders of this post-workout carb mistake is shakes and smoothies. Smoothies have become such a big trend, and many people now stop at a smoothie bar on their way home from the gym or wait until they get home to put fruits, veggies, and other ingredients into a blender themselves.
The problem is that all fruits and many vegetables are loaded with sugar. This sugar is healthier than the typical refined, white sugar you see in sweets and desserts, but it is still sugar, and it is still a carbohydrate. Even if you add in a scoop of protein powder, your body recognizes the carbs first and digests the sugar quicker than the protein.
Your body then holds onto that sugar as it is in repair mode, and stores it as fat. With all of the extra sugar and carbohydrates, some of these smoothies could even contain more calories than your entire workout burned! While a smoothie could be a great, healthy alternative for breakfast or a mid-afternoon pick me up, it is not ideal for a post-workout snack.
If you do have a sweet tooth, then we suggest using natural sweeteners like Stevia or Monk Fruit which will make smoothies even more delicious.
By kicking this smoothie craze, you could be saving yourself a lot of extra calories and unwanted hidden carbohydrates.
Concluding Thoughts – Do’s and Don’ts of Post Workout Snacks
Working out can be hard and intense, which can lead to a craving for an easy to grab snack afterward. But, it is important to know what you are putting into your body, as you don’t want your seemingly harmless snack to undo your progress for the day.
Focusing on protein-packed items directly after your training session will help kick your body into repair mode, and following that with a healthy, balanced meal will help to ensure you are getting the nutrients you need!