Post Workout Guide
What to do post workout to get the most from your training
Consuming high quality protein and carbohydrate immediately after a workout can seriously improve your results.
The hour or two immediately after each and every one of your workouts are the single most important hours of your day. More important than your actual training, more important than your sleep - more important than any other time of the day.
Why? Simple. The muscles you've just trained are completely and utterly frazzled by your weight training. If you could see inside them you'd see all the micro-trauma caused to your muscle fibres and how depleted of energy sources such as glucose and creatine they are. Each muscle fibre is gasping for carbohydrates and repair substances, like they are unfit eighty year old who've just ran a half marathon!
Your body knows that how badly the muscles are affected and so for the next couple of hours it puts all hands on deck to try and help them recover enough that you could use them again should the need arise. This is a survival mechanism - your body assumes that there was a jolly good reason why the muscles were exercised so intensely and the reason could soon arise again. Should you need to perform the activity again before the muscles are sufficiently recovered then you may not be able to carry out the required actions and if it was a life and death situation you could die. Hence the all important need to get the muscles recovered, and quickly.
So, for the next couple of hours, the nutrient uptake ability of the affected muscles is massively increased - they are like vacuum cleaners and suck as much nutrients from the blood as they can. Should this golden opportunity to give the muscles what they need be missed then it can take up to two days or so longer for your muscles to receive all the nutrients they require for recovery (let alone growth). The difference in recuperation can be astounding.
Hopefully it is clear then, that you must ensure that post workout your blood carries all the nutrients that your muscles will suck up during the 'golden window of opportunity'. Do this by consuming a good quality carbohydrate / protein powder drink, followed by some fruit and more water. Then, eat a meal within an hour or two to ensure adequate nutritional intake.
ConclusionDon't wait till you get home to eat - your post workout carb/protein drink is VITAL to your recuperation. Remember - before your muscles grow they must recuperate, and if they're still recuperating or only just recuperated before you train the same muscles again then you absolutely will not grow - this is the essence of over-training.