They say that a good breakfast is probably the most important meal of the day. It is most likely true that breakfast provides a great start to your day. What about your post workout snack?
This could well be the most important meal for you.
Why is it so vital to eat something after your workout? After a pretty hard workout your muscle glycogen is depleted and the cortisol levels are high because they are doing that very important task of breaking down muscle tissue. This is called a catabolic state and is not great because you want to get to an anabolic sate. How can you do that? The best way is to eat something as soon as you are out of the gym after your workout.
Try to have a snack or meal which contains 300-500 calories. A woman who weighs, let us say 120 lbs can do with a 300 calorie meal. A man who weighs 200lbs will definitely need about 500 calories. Try twice the rate of carbs to protein with a maximum of four times as many carbs as protein. You need fats too but NOT in your post workout meal you can have those with all your other meals.
Your digestion will be slowed down by fat so best to avoid it at this time.
You do not really need any of those post workout supplements which you see in all the fitness magazines. Go for something natural. Here are some ideas:- any fruit, raisins, honey or maple syrup will all spike your insulin levels which in turn is going to restore your levels of muscle glycogen and encourage the anabolic effect which will build your muscles. For the protein bit, I usually try low fat yogurt or denatured whey protein isolate. Try a smoothie recipe for some great post workout meals
Chocolate Banana. This has about 450 calories, 35 grams of protein and 75 grams of carbs, just .5 grams of fat. Blend the following ingredients :- 1 cup water, ½ cup skim milk, one and a half frozen bananas, 2 tbsp organic maple syrup, and 30 grams chocolate whey protein powder.
If you are committed to losing weight
you should remember that all your daily meals should be the opposite of the post workout snack. What are you eating during the day, then ? During the day, your meals have a low glycemic carbs, lots of slow release protein which is easy to digest, healthy fats and carbs which are slowly digested. That is in stark contrast to the post workout snack, where you are going for high glycemic carbs, quickly digested proteins and hardly any fat.
If you want a leaner body, try these suggestions I have just mentioned above. The great thing about them is that you can satisfy your cravings for sweet things without even a pang of guilt! The extra sugars you are eating go straight to the muscles and not around your waist!