If you want to know what is the best post-workout meal, then this article is for you. It’s best to eat in the first twenty minutes after the training session. If you restrain yourself from eating for two hours after training, then it loses all meaning. You will burn some fat, but not gain anything in the size, definition and thickness of the muscle or speed up the metabolism.
In the first twenty minutes after training, your body’s so called anabolic window for consumption of proteins and carbohydrates (not fats) is open. Everything that you eat in this period will go towards muscle replenishment and muscle mass, no calories will go towards fat. This is very important!
After training, it is better to intake carbs in liquid form from simple, highly glycemic sources. You need to achieve a high insulin jump, with its anabolic and anti-catabolic (ones that help grow only muscle mass) properties. Grape juice is considered the best, as it has a high correlation of glucose and fructose.
Drink approximately 1 gram of carbohydrates of juice for each kilo of ideal weight. A glass of grape juice contains 38 grams of carbohydrates (155 calories). You can also eat any carbohydrate meals that don’t contain fat (bread, jam, sugar, potatoes, rice, pasta, fruits, vegetables, etc.)
Besides, right after training you should load up on protein and it should be in the form of a protein shake. This way, protein synthesis in your muscles will grow three times that of fasting. So bring a bottle of a protein cocktail or juice, if you train outside your home, and drink it all as soon as you are done with your routine. The amount of protein in a shake should be .55 grams for each kilogram of ideal weight. If you can’t drink protein shakes for some reason, eat egg whites. If you can eat within an hour of the end of the session, then choose any protein foods, just calculate the needed amount of protein. It’s easy to determine your dose of protein food – it should fit inside your palm.
Since eating after training has one important goal, which is faster and more effective muscle growth, there should be no fat at all in the food. Fat will slow the rate of carbohydrate and protein penetration from your stomach to your blood.
Protein food should not contain much fat, i.e. if you are eating chicken, eat chicken breast, if eggs – only the whites. You should avoid lamb and pork as these meats are always fatty – eat more veal. You should also be careful with cheese, milk, yogurts and cottage cheese – as a rule, these contain more than 5% fat. The only exception of this rule is fatty fish (no fried!) – you can and should eat it as often as possible.
Everything that contains caffeine should be excluded for at least two hours after training. This includes coffee, coco and all chocolates (even chocolate flavored protein shakes). Caffeine interferes with the work of insulin and stalls your body from loading glycogen into your muscles and liver and take advantage of the protein to restore muscles. So if you train in the morning, wait for two hours and only then drink strong coffee. A cup of coffee before training will help you stay fresh and energized.