The best post-gym foods for your body.
When you work out, you may feel like your body is getting stronger as you sweat. That’s only sort of true. Of course, exercise is going to lead to a healthier and firmer physique, but the real changes actually happen after your workout. Exercise is a positive stressor, putting your body under pressure to get stronger, to become more flexible, and to transform into the best version of you. Over the course of your workout, you deplete glycogen reserves and cause some breakdown of the proteins in your muscles. This all means that what you do to your body outside of the gym is just as important as inside the gym. Getting proper rest and nutrition after a workout will help your body to adapt and repair in a way that gives you the best possible results.
So, what should a good post-gym snack look like? I explore the foods that will help you achieve your goals, below.
Protein is going to help you to repair and build muscle after you’re done with your workout session. It gives you the building blocks for repair and without it, muscle recovery can be slow. You can get protein from a number of meat, dairy, and vegetable sources. These could include:
- Protein Powder
- Chicken or Salmon
- Lean Beef
- Beans, Lentils, and Pulses
If you want to get really technical about it, it’s recommended that you eat 0.5 grams of protein per kilo of body weight soon after a workout.
Eating carbs after a workout helps to replenish your glycogen stores which, in turn, fuels your muscles. The amount of carbs you need will depend on the type of workout you do and endurance sports like running or swimming will increase your carb requirements compared to pure strength training. Experts suggest that eating carbs and protein at the same time is the very best way to repair your body. Your carb intake could include:
- Crackers and Peanut Butter
- Toast and Almond Butter
- Sweet Potatoes
What about Fats?
Despite what you may have been told, fat is not the enemy. Healthy fats are actually an important part of your nutrient intake. There is some evidence that fat may slow down nutrition absorption after a workout, but it is limited and it will not stop absorption, just reduce the speed of the process. Try not to worry too much about avoiding fats and simply try to reduce saturated fat in the food you consume.
It’s all too easy to think that after we workout for the day, we are done. But long term health and fitness is about much more than getting your heart pumping on the treadmill. It should be part of every aspect of your life, from the sleep you get to the food you eat. Looking for personalised health and fitness advice to transform your lifestyle? We have your back. Get in touch to talk about your goals and how we can help you achieve them. Until then, stay amazing.