Our clients always ask “ what should I eat after a workout”?
So today I want to share with you our favorite post workout protein shake that will help maximize your fitness results.
But before I share the recipe with you lets talk a little bit about why fueling your body (post workout nutrition) after a workout is important and why a protein shake is an ideal way to do it.
Why Post Workout Nutrition is Important?
After an intense workout, you’re spent, right?
You have just put forth all you’ve got into the workout.
So, you need to do something to replace the energy you’ve just expended plus repair the tissues you’ve broken down.
You need the proper nutrients, and you need them pronto.
Why A Protein Shake Is Ideal Post Workout?
A high quality protein shake is ideal because it provides you with:
1) Quick nutrients + energy – A protein shake is easily digestible. Eating a whole food meal will take longer for your body to digest. In order to take full advantage of the benefits of post workout nutrition you need to be able to digest the nutrients quickly. Simple carbohydrates like fruit and proteins like isolates are perfect nutrients that are digested quickly.
2) Amino Acids (Protein) Source – By supplying yourself with protein you’ll be able to provide your body with the nutrients it needs to repair your muscles and recover properly. Protein will also keep you satisfied and balance your blood sugar.
3) Refills your muscle (glycogen) stores – You’ll need to supply your muscles with proper energy through glucose. So having a simple carbohydrate source like a banana in your shake will give you the carbohydrates you need to fill your muscles and be fueled for your next workout.
4) Curbs hunger – Ever feel ravenous after a workout? By consuming a delicious protein shake you’ll take the edge off your hunger. This way you don’t blow all the hard work you just put into your workout with a chow down of whatever you can find in the fridge :).
What makes up a high quality protein shake?
1) Quality Protein Source — Whey Protein Isolate is recommended because it is a complete, fast digesting protein.
2) Simple & Clean Product – Make sure there aren’t additives, preservatives, and all of these other compounds you can’t pronounce in your protein source.
3) Low Carb Content – Many protein powders have additive sugars that bump the carbohydrate count way up. Since you’ll be adding some form of fruit to the shake and drawing the majority of carbs from this source, there is no need for a ton more from the actual protein powder. Shoot for less than 5 grams.
4) Frothy Milkshake Texture – By using frozen fruit whether it be bananas or some type of berry (strawberry, raspberry, blueberry, blackberry) you will create a frothy milkshake like texture that elevates your protein shake. You’ve got to try this, it makes all the difference!
5) Great taste – Whenever we make our favorite protein shake for our friends or our clients they always scream “this is delicious, how come mine never tastes like this?” (We’ll be talking about common protein mistakes in the next section that can effect flavor). The point here is you have to make a great tasting shake otherwise you’re likely to not stick with it. You got to love it, so experiment a little to make it taste great to you!
Here’s our Favorite Protein Shake.
- Whey Protein Isolate (we use Bluebonnet)
- Frozen Banana
- Coconut Water
- Powdered Greens (we use Superfood Plus)
1 scoop of protein powder, ¼ of a medium size frozen banana, 4 ounces of coconut water, 2 tablespoons of powdered greens, and 1 cup of ice, put it in a Vitamix (blender is ok), and blend until you have a creamy, milkshake like texture.
Avoid these common protein shake mistakes!
1) Adding loads of fruit – I see everywhere people adding way too much fruit to there smoothie or shake, before they know it the carb/sugar content is well over 70-80 grams. That is too much!
2) Adding lots of peanut butter – There is nothing wrong with peanut butter, but just like any type of nuts, it is very calorie dense so a little goes a long way. You need to be mindful – 1 tablespoon equals 100 calories.
3) Getting a protein powder with high sugar/carbs – Many protein powders have sweeteners and added sugars that if you don’t look you won’t realize are in there. Read the label and be aware.
4) Using a Protein Powder with a bad or bland flavor – You can find high quality, great tasting protein powders that are low in sugar. Bluebonnet has both French Vanilla and Dutch Chocolate flavors — both are delish.
5) Adding too many powdered greens – Start slow (1 tablespoon), especially if you are sensitive to earthy flavors, and slowly build up to a full serving size.
Notice how simple and nutrient dense this protein shake is. Remember, nutrient dense means supplying the most amount of nutrients (vitamins, minerals, protein in this case) with minimal excess calories.
Check out the high protein punch with the perfect amount of carbs. Even though there isn’t much fruit in the shake we’re still getting over 20 grams of carbs.
So now we’d like to hear from you — what’s your favorite post workout shake?
And for bonus — tell us what the macro/calorie breakdown is, awareness is always key.