Post Workout Nutrition

The post workout window turns out to be more like a post workout barn door. At least that’s the term the researchers used to describe it.

It used to be thought that without a meal immediately after the workout that a lot of the benefit of the workout and usefulness of the food that came later was wasted. Muscle wouldn’t grow and the food you ate later would more likely turn to fat.

Well it looks like that isn’t true. What the researchers found was not that surprising if you think about it. If you get the right amount of food, over the course of the whole day, you’ll be just fine. That nutrition strategy may not be completely optimal but meal timing only accounts for about 5% (or less) of diet results.

That 5% is still there for people who are otherwise dialed in though. Especially for people who have another training session or competition soon after, timing becomes more important for recovery. For these people shoot for a 2:1 ratio of carbs to protein to start and adjust as needed based on how you do.

For most people newer to dieting shoot to get 30-40 grams of protein soonish after your workout. If you’re having a whole food meal have most of your carbs for the day in this meal. The grams of carbs can vary a ton based on individual needs so it’s harder to give an easy number.

Summary: if all your other diet pieces are in place then focus on getting the post workout meal in quickly. If you’re still working on getting your diet cleaned up and where you need it to be, don’t worry about the timing so much. Instead focus on getting the calories and protein, carbs, fats all at the level they need to be.

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