Proper nutrition has to be part of your game plan if you want to see any serious results.
As I’ve mentioned before here, unless you won the genetic lottery, you have to be smart about your nutrition. You have to take care of your body by giving it the proper fuel to allow you to do the things you love to do.
One of the best ways to do that is to consume a post workout shake.
Check out the recipe below for a tasty post workout drink that will help fuel muscle growth so you build lean tissue, shed fat, and maintain a healthy metabolism.
The key components of a post workout shake will mostly be carbs and protein. You want a healthy dose of protein, a lot of simple carbs, and very little fat. The simple carbs (sugar) will actually push insulin and help deliver nutrients into your cells. This is a good thing
On a similar note, if you’re going to crush some serious sugar, ie cake, cookies, candy, etc – make sure you do it directly after a high intensity workout. After a high intensity workout, your muscle fuel stores (glycogen, the storage form of glucose) will be depleted and will need to be replenished.
By timing your high sugar intake post workout, these nutrients will go to replacing fuel stores and not metabolize into fat stores. This is subject for a separate post in itself, but the point is this – if you’re going to consume a high sugar meal/snack, make sure it’s post workout and you’ll minimize the damage.
Back to the shake.
There’s a reason those large dudes are walking around the gym with protein shakes. There’s a small window post workout that your body is the most receptive to protein synthesis – the process of repairing and building muscle tissue.
Various research will disagree slightly on the amount of time you have, but the general consensus is that you have about 30-50 minutes post workout.
Take advantage of this small window and you will see results.
Our Favorite Shake
- 1 cup coconut water
- 1 frozen banana
- 1-2 scoop(s) protein powder (whey is best because it’s absorbed quickly but you can use any)
- 1/2 cup ice
I used Sunwarrior Vegan rice protein in today’s shake – this is a good option is you have any dairy intolerances otherwise we use the Bluebonnet.
You want to shoot for about a 2-1 to 4-1 carb to protein ratio in your post workout shake depending on your goals. The above shake has the following breakdown:
- 230 calories
- 37 g carbs
- 18 g protein
- 2.5 fat
So it’s about a 2 to 1 carb /protein ratio.
Be careful not to add too much fat as this will slow down the absorption rate of the other nutrients.
If your main goal is fat loss, you have to be careful about drinking too many calories. Calories still do matter. And shakes can be very caloric if you’re not careful. Substitute water for coconut water. And go lighter on the fruit. We still want to refuel muscles, but we want to be careful of extra calories.
If you’re looking to pack on muscle then your #1 nutrition goal should be consuming enough calories to achieve a caloric surplus (eating more than you burn) so that your body enters an anabolic state (the process of building tissue).
If that is your goal, I would consume a couple shakes per day. Make sure to keep the post work out shake as explained above. And then add another shake during the day with some nut butter and/or chia seeds – this will up the calories with some good fat along with a healthy amount of fiber.
Julie and I are all about smart ways to maximize your results. It’s about finding the biggest bang for your buck. Fueling your body with the right mix of protein and carbs post workout will do your body right.
It mostly depends on your goals and activity level, but this above shake should give you a good base that you can play around with. Remember to keep the post workout shake to simple sugars and fast digesting protein.
Get that blender out and start crushing some ice.
That’s it for today – let me know what you’re putting in your blender in the comments below!
Stay healthy and here’s to shaking it up,