If you fall into the habit of rewarding yourself with a takeaway or a bar of chocolate after a workout you could be ruining all of your good work. What you eat after your workout is just as, if not more, important than what you eat before you exercise.
WHY YOU SHOULD EAT PRE-WORKOUT
Your body stores energy in the form of glycogen and protein which is broken down when exercising once the food that we have eaten has burnt off. The body will use stored protein to repair muscles within a few hours of working out, but it will be most productive around 40-45 minutes after your workout. Therefore, if your main goal is to build muscle then a minimum of 30 grams of protein and 35 grams of carbohydrates after you work out will support the building of muscle. The protein and carbs should be eaten around 15 minutes after a work out for ultimate muscle growth but if the aim of the exercise is to lose weight then wait until the 45 minutes mark.
Here are some of the best things that you can eat after a workout:
Natural, Greek style, yogurt has more protein than standard yogurt and is a great way to consume carbohydrates. Adding cereal, seeds, nuts, and fruit to the yogurt will boost the micronutrients that you consume and the dish as a whole is a lighter way to eat after a morning workout.
Fruit contains carbohydrates that are easily digested and enzymes that will aid the breaking down of nutrients in your body. The quick breakdown of nutrients can help relieve tired muscles and some fruits, such as pineapple and blueberries contain natural anti-inflammatories to aid muscle recovery. While eating fruit you are also getting your recommended daily allowance of vitamins and nutrients.
Eggs are one of the most versatile foods that you can eat, whether it be hard boiled, scrambled or poached. However, you like to eat yours you can rely on essential nutrients and that all-important protein. They can be eaten any time of the day and can be added to lunch boxes if you generally workout during the middle of the day.
Lean Grilled Meat
As well as being very low in fat, lean grilled meat is very easy to prepare and you can easily meas-ure the amount of protein that you are consuming. You can eat with fresh vegetables or salad to help achieve your five-a-day, which makes the whole great for eating after an early evening workout.
Protein shakes, made using a premium shaker bottle, are a great way to consume the amount of protein required to fuel your body before a workout. If you are building muscle, as explained earlier, you will need to consume protein within 15 minutes of your workout so adding a protein shake to your gym bag is the best way to consume the amount that you need.