What To Eat After A Workout
How many of you feel so hungry after a good workout but never know what to eat? It is important that you fuel up your body with the best foods in order to help you recover faster, feel better and get stronger. No point in working out so hard and having an unhealthy meal straight after your workout.
You may ask yourself ...
Why does what you eat after a workout matter?
Before you need to understand why you need to eat certain foods after a workout, you need to understand what a workout does to your body.
When you do any sort of strenuous physical activity, you deplete your glycogen ie. carbohydrates, that live in your muscles in order to give you energy. When you do any form of resistance training, you also create tiny micro-tear's in your muscles and damage muscle proteins. Before you begin to panic about all this, don't worry at all. It is a good thing because it helps your muscles to get stronger during the healing and repairing process.
After a good workout while you are "resting", your body is hard at work re-stocking glycogen and repairing muscle fibers. Without the proper nutrients, you can seriously slow down the recovery process because you are denying your body the fuel it needs to do the work.
You need to eat right in order for your body to heal and get stronger.
So now, what actual foods can you eat after a workout?
Below are some good examples:
Brown rice, basmati rice, jasmine rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pasta, oatmeal and quinoa.
Chicken, salmon, eggs, greek yoghurt (or any normal store bought yoghurt - for my South African followers/ readers), cottage cheese, any whey protein powder (I recommend Slender You Protein Powder). Should you wish to enquire more about whey protein, please drop me an email at email@example.com.
Nuts,nut butters, avocado.
For more tips on what to eat or recipe ideas, you can sign up for my meal plans, cook book or meal delivery service. My meal plans and recipes guide you on what to eat as well as indicate your recommended individual portion allowances. Click on this link for more information on my meal plans.
What to eat after heavy cardio?
Cardio depletes your glycogen stores more than it tears muscle fibers. When you do heavy cardio ie. running, swimming or cycling you need to eat more carbs and a moderate amount of protein. ie a bowl of rice or pasta with meat or tofu.
What to eat after resistance training?
Resistance training does not deplete glycogen stores as much as cardio. A weight lifter will need fewer carbs than a long-distance runner to stay healthy. If you are doing regular resistance training, aim to get that 20-40 grams of protein as your post workout.
How long should you wait to eat after a workout?
It is recommended to eat your post workout meal within 30 to 45 minutes of working out. This is because your body really wants to rebuild glycogen stores after a workout, enhancing your ability to do so. Carry your protein shake to the gym with you and drink it straight after your workout. The same applies to your post workout meal.
Lastly, HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE!! Your body needs water. Your body loses lots of water through sweat when you work out. As you sweat, you deplete your electrolytes. Proper hydration will speed up your recovery and help you workout better and harder.
I hope this blog has given you some insight as to what to eat after you workout and the benefits of eating the right food.