What you put into your post workout shake, and hence into your body immediately post workout, can play a major part in how quickly your body repairs and recovers ready for your next session. This in hand leads to new muscle growth, therefore the more you neglect post workout nutrition, the more you hinder your gains. If you train regularly with the intention of improving your power and strength, or stacking on some serious new muscle, then you need to be consuming certain nutrients post workout for optimum muscle repair and recovery. Think of it like we do , after we've put our body through its paces, our muscles are sore and all we want to do is rest, we feel it deserves the below ingredients and if we do not provide them, we start to feel guilty!
1. Whey Protein
By now, the majority of people who know at least a little bit about sports nutrition are starting to realise the importance of whey protein post-training. Whey is the fastest absorbing protein that exists, and is extremely effective at getting to your starved muscles quickly to begin immediate repair. This is why you should be aiming to consume whey as soon as you finish in the gym and no longer than 45 minutes after. This length of times known as the protein window, as within this period consuming the right nutrition plays a bigger part in your gains than any other time of day. According to studies carried out at the University of Texas and also published at many fitness & health website, your body is able to absorb 50% more protein within this window.
There is much debate over the use of carbohydrates post workout these days. Personally, we feel it is down to the individual. Some people can recover without the intake of carbs, whereas some struggle to recover properly and can still feel lethargic or sore by the time their next session comes along. One thing carbs are good for is speeding up protein and other nutrient absorption within your body. Research performed at Maastricht University proved that high GI carbs drastically increase insulin levels within your body, which leads to more protein absorption, combine that with whey protein and your muscles are having a feast! If you are going to have carbs post workout (which is recommendable perhaps unless you are dieting) aim for high GI carbs such as dextrose or maltodextrin, split evenly with protein (50/50).
3. HMB (Beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate)
Proven to delay muscle breakdown and encourage new muscle growth, adding a small amount of HMB in your post workout shake will help reduce the onset of muscle soreness, meaning you will recover a lot quicker in time for your next session. Studies performed at the University of New York provided a number of male participants with 3 grams of HMB per day over a three-week period of intense resistance training before comparing the results with the same number of participants who consumed none however performed the same training routine. The results showed those participants that took no HMB increased muscle mass by on average less than one pound, whereas those who consumed HMB increased muscle mass by an average 2.6 pounds.
Like carbohydrates, adding leucine to your post workout shake will also increase the speed of nutrient absorption and hence how fast protein synthesis occurs in your muscles. Participants who consumed leucine following sixty minutes of intense training increased protein synthesis by 33%, according to studies published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The study also stated leucine acts as an anti-catabolic agent as it prevented muscle breakdown throughout the participants, meaning faster muscle gains.