Professional athletes have to schedule their meals & snacks way ahead of time and be very careful about their food choices to attain maximum results.
But what about normally active people like us??
The first meal after your workout plays a crucial role in your post workout recovery and is at least as important as the workout itself. If not more - since 80% of the way we look is attributed to our diet. You can never outtrain a bad diet, but more of that in a different post.
Well... so much for all of you out there who thought it would be wise to not eat for the next couple of hours post-workout to "increase fat burn". Haha, you morons!! This, my dears, is just not how it works. Again I don't want to bore you with any of the physiological and biochemical details, so you just have to take it as it is :) (or google it)
Ideally, one should consume the post-workout meal within 30-60 minutes after a finished workout. Even though you might not be hungry right after an exhausting workout, it's really important to eat within that time frame to maximize your results & change your physique from flab to fab ^^
(..and don't even try to pretend you were doing that all along..)
Sources of carbs and protein are needed to help repair those maxed out damaged muscles and replenish glycogen stores (=storage form of glucose). You need to replace both -carbohydrates and electrolytes- that were lost during your workout to prevent muscle soreness and to increase training effects. However what you should not be eating is fats, because they slow down the transit through your stomach and therefore hinder absorption. And your primary goal is to get those nutrients to your damaged muscles ASAP! Makes sense?
What most people tend to forget is that when you don't provide proper fuel for your body it goes into starvation mode, slowing its metabolistic rate and practically eating itself.
This is actually an origin of human evolution where famine and periods of starvation dominated every day life and the body had to hold onto every tiny bit of energy it could get.
So what have we learned from all of this today?
But please eat the right food! Here are some ideas for quick & smart snacks:
- protein shake with vanilla protein powder, peanut butter & a frozen banana
- almond butter banana sandwich
- egg omelette with veggies
- chicken breast with a sweet potatoe
- tuna fish sandwich
- hummus spread on a whole wheat tortilla wrap with veggies
- yoghurt with a banana & berries
Question: What are your favorite post workout snacks?