Nutrition After Exercise
Nutrition after exercise replaces the lost carbs, protein, and electrolytes necessary to recover. Your body cannot rebuild muscle and re-load glycogen stores without a proper meal after exercise. Get the most out of your workout by eating the proper ratio of carbs to protein. And don’t forget to hydrate!
Hydration is number one. Drink water until you replace the fluid you lost during your workout. The amount of water you need is dependent on the duration/intensity of the workout along with factors such as temperature, elevation, and rate of perspiration. The most accurate way to assure proper hydration is by weighing yourself before and after exercise. Try to return to pre-workout weight as soon as possible. Another rule of thumb is to drink water until you have clear urine. Hydration is necessary for your body to properly metabolize the much needed protein, carbohydrates, and electrolytes to replenish your aching body.
What food do I eat after exercise?
Nutrition After Exercise: What, When, How?
Eat Carbs And Proteins
The ratio of Carbs to Proteins varies. Most studies conclude that a ratio of 2:1 is best with twice as many grams of carbs to protein is ideal. But some say as high as 4:1 is most effective. What’s the right answer? It depends on your workout. Longer and harder workouts require more protein. Shorter and lighter exercise does not. The key is to eat high quality food. Low glycemic carbs and good sources of protein is key.
When To Eat After Exercise
All studies agree that replenishing the carbs and protein after exercise is important. But when is the best time to make the post-workout shake? As soon as possible. If you wait more than two hours after you workout your body will not metabolize the protein as efficiently. Researchers can record the rate of protein synthesis after exercise and all studies show that the sooner you eat the better you can recover.
The amount of protein and carbohydrates you should eat depends on your body weight and of course how hard the workout was. Researchers agree that you should eat between .3-.6 grams of carbs per pound to stimulate a healthy release of insulin, which helps with protein synthesis and glycogen storage.
- A 150lb athlete should eat between 45-90 grams of low glycemic carbs after exercise.
- If that 150lb athlete eats 60 grams of carbs he/she should have between 15-30 grams of protein.