If you have decided to hit the gym recently or you have been doing sports for a while, then you know the importance of proper dieting. “You are what you eat” is a saying that couldn’t be truer in this case. You need the right nutrients to give you strength and the “material” to build your muscle mass.
However, taking care of what you eat after the workout is over is equally, if not more important. Certain foods promise to instantly boost your energy levels so you won’t feel too tired or worn down.
In case you are wondering what your next post-practice meal should look like, be sure to continue reading to find out more about the best food to eat after an intense workout.
The importance of protein intake
You probably already know that proteins are the building blocks of muscles. That is why you have includes foods like meat, mushrooms, egg, etc. into your daily diet. What you might have missed to research is what happens with these proteins during intense physical activity.
Muscle proteins break down as the result of all that running and weightlifting, leaving your metabolism to crave for more nutrients. In other words, your body’s protein reserves get broken down so you need to replenish them as soon as possible.
On average, 20 to 40 grams of protein is necessary to restock on this important compound. If you’re working out in the afternoon, be sure to eat a beefy (literally) dinner.
In terms of actual meals that can boost your protein intake, eggs and fish meat top the scales. Further on, you can consume dairy products including Greek yoghurt and cottage cheese.
When it comes to fish, tuna and salmon are by far the most nutritious species to include on the menu. In fact, all meat products are rich in protein but chicken meat is the best quality kind.
Finally, any animal or plant-based powdered protein or a simple protein bar is also a food alternative to cooked food if you lack the time to prepare it.
Another store that gets depleted during physical activity is glycogen. It is directly related to carbon-hydrates in your body so the first meals you eat after training should be rich in carbs.
There are two grounds rules when it comes to carbing up. First, you need to consume the necessary quantity of carbon-hydrate with half an hour of the completion of the session and they should be consumed with the aforementioned protein.
Basically, the meal you eat after working out should be a rich one, containing at least 0.5 grams of carbs in order to induce glycogen resynthesis. The carb-protein ratio of the meal you eat should be 3 to 1 in favour of carbs.
According to Fighting Report advice, the ultimate foods to improve recovery after training are oatmeal, whole grains, and beans. In general, the food rich in carbon-hydrate is different vegetables and fruit like sweet potatoes, berries, kiwi, banana, pineapple, greens, etc.
Recently, rice and rice cakes have become fairly popular because they are easy to consume because you buy them whole-made with different flavours.
One of them is quinoa, which is another substance that helps you recover quicker. Finally, if you feel thirsty, instead of regular milk, you can try chocolate milk. Not only does it taste better, but is actually loaded with carbs.
A bit of fat on the side
Many athletes shun fat intake after their workout because it inhibits digestion. Although this is generally true, You should by no means deprive your organism of fat altogether.
Actually, ingesting foods rich in fat right after practice does not affect the glycogen synthesis taking place in the muscles. That is why you only need to limit the amount of fat in your post-workout meal, not do away with it completely.
In order to help you achieve this fine dietary balance, a handful of nuts can help a lot. They are rich in fats that your organism will have no trouble digests, as even nut butter is a welcoming addition to your diet.
You can mix nuts with slices of avocado or mix it up with dried fruit for better taste and more powerful recovery.
Water all the way
If you are exercising in a gym, then you are prudent enough to carry around a water bottle to work out the upper body. Joking set aside, sipping water during training help you stay hydrated because you lose electrolytes through sweat.
However, the amount of water you drink while working out is not nearly as much as the amount you actually lose. That is why it is important to drink increased amounts of liquids at least 12 hours after the physical activity ceased.
Having listed the best foods you can eat after an intense without, you are free to combine them in any way you wish. The ideal meal should contain plenty of proteins and carbs, alongside some fats as well but you are the one choosing the flavour. Just remember to drink a glass of juice while you eat to replenish those electrolytes.