After you work out, there’s a certain amount of time in which you are able to replenish the calories burned as a way to boost recovery. Find out the ideal way to do this and why it matters.
When it comes to post-workout nutrition, the window of opportunity is the time immediately following exercise when your body is extra-responsive to nutrition. Think of it as your muscles being like a sponge, quickly absorbing nutrients needed to rebuild and repair. Research indicates that this response occurs in the 30-45 minutes following exercise and can last up 1-2 hours.
Exercise activates several factors that promote this “sponge-like” response:
- It triggers activation of the enzyme that stimulates the production of glycogen, the stored form of glucose that is used during intense exercise. While glycogen can be formed and stored long after exercise, it happens most quickly during this initial period of time. This is important for loading muscles and the liver with stored energy for future workouts.
- Muscle membranes become more permeable, allowing needed nutrients to flow into them more easily.
- Body cells become more sensitive to insulin, the key that unlocks the door to allow glucose to enter.
There are two main reasons why recovery nutrition is important. First, it replaces energy and nutrients needed to maintain performance levels during subsequent workouts. Second, it provides nutritional building blocks required to repair and build body tissue after your most recent workout.
If you are not getting a protein drink that gives your body what it needs immediately after a hard workout, I will bet that you are missing the window of recovery that your body needs!
Get with us so we can set you up and have your training sessions stay on track.