When I started weight training, I knew zilch about pre and post workout meals. I was just lifting to relieve stress due to a challenging time in my life. Blog to come on “My Entry into the Fitness World”. I discovered the difference nourishing your body properly after I made a few attempts in fitness competitions and didn’t have a Nutrition coach. The learning process was humbling to say the least…just go to Nationals and surround yourself with lean machines and you’ll soon discover they must be doing something I’m not! Back to the drawing board, research and Boom! My physique started to change for the better. Not only in aesthetics but I felt better. Putting Crap in your body equals feeling like crap. Period.
Competing for me is history but I learned quite a bit from those days that I still apply today such as post workout nutrient timing – shoot for 30 minutes – max 45. Eat to recover, reduce soreness and don’t let that hard work in the gym go to waste. I could elaborate more on pre and post-workout nutrients and more as there is a ton of information on nutrition. Mass diet options, opinions, opinions, opinions. The best advice I can give you is hire a nutrition coach, dietitian, etc. that educates you on what YOU should be doing to achieve your specific goals. As a certified Precision Nutrition Coach, I assist people in starting first with their mindset. Our Food intake has to do more with how we think and what habits we’ve developed. Something I have learned through nutrition experimenting is if we look at Food more as Fuel than Fun, we’ll feel better. But, let’s be realistic and enjoy food also. Find your balance. Hope these five post workout snacks serve you! Till next time, keep training and go 3D – Desire. Drive and Dedicate. Desire to aspire, Keep Driving to get there, and Dedicate yourself until you achieve.
1. Sandwich wraps
Wraps made with whole-grain bread and wholesome ingredients like turkey, chicken, lettuce or tomatoes provide a good combination of complex carbohydrates, which won’t give you a post-workout insulin surge, and proteins, which will help your muscles repair themselves for future growth and development. Adding mixed vegetables to your wrap will increase its nutritional value and the micronutrients you get from your post-workout meal. Sandwich wraps are also convenient and portable.
2. Fruits and almonds
Fruits provide healthy carbohydrates that will give you a quick energy boost, as well as multiple antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, according to Men’s Fitness. Incorporating a pear, apple or banana in your post-workout snack can help keep calories low and nutrition sweet and easy. Adding almonds gives you protein and healthy fats, additional energy sources to work from and material to further repair and build your muscles.
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3. Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt is a healthy, protein-packed option for a post-workout meal. It also makes an excellent base for post-workout smoothies, or it can be easily added to other dishes, such as dips, sauces or mixed in for a tangy kick of protein. It makes an excellent choice because it has significantly more protein than regular yogurt, and servings today come light or fat-free, giving athletes an option for what kind of nutritional value they seek from Greek yogurt. It also provides a boost of calcium, making it excellent for bone health as well as muscle development.
Whether they’re scrambled, sunny side up or baked into an omelette with chicken and veggies, eggs make a fantastic, versatile base for a post-workout meal. This protein and fat-rich food is a great source of important nutrients such as Vitamins B and A. The majority of the fat in the yolk is healthy, promoting good cholesterol. Incorporating eggs into your post workout meal makes for an easy-to-cook, easy-to-prepare and cheap source of protein for athletes looking to build muscle without consuming excessive saturated fat or carbohydrates.
5. Chocolate milk
One of the most surprising but good choices for a post-workout meal is chocolate milk. Typically associated with elementary school and assumed to be a sugar-laden waste of calories, chocolate milk is actually surprisingly nutritious, particularly for a post-workout meal.
This yummy drink contains all the healthy proteins found in milk and comes in low-fat varieties to keep the extra calories down.
Researchers at Cornell University claims that milk-based drinks are superior to protein shakes for athletes looking for the best source of nutrition. The calorie and protein arrangement was ideal for athletes, with sugar low enough not to upset a stomach and fat content low enough to be easily digestible and low-cal. Rather than fork over money for an expensive chocolate-flavored protein shake, pick up a jug of chocolate milk to save money and get all the nutrition you need.
Your post-workout meal should replenish your energy, help repair your exhausted muscles, and keep your digestion moving without overloading it, undoing all your hard work or giving you a rush of insulin after exercise. Check out these healthy choices to improve your recovery and help build a stronger you. However, if you need a wider range of healthy after-workout snacks, look for low-fat, gluten-free, high-protein items that boost your muscle building rate and help you strengthen your physique.