If you are trying to lose weight and build muscle mass, then you probably know that a good exercise routine can help. Adding weight and endurance training to your regimen can greatly assist you as well. You also will need to pay attention to pre- and post-workout nutrition. Specifically, you will need to add a good deal of protein to your diet. Keep reading to learn why you need protein and also find out how to create a protein-rich post-workout shake.
Why Is Protein Important After A Workout?
After a hard workout, you may notice that you are hungry, sore, and tired. While these are all signs that you have exerted a great deal of energy, they also tell you that your muscles are in need of some assistance. Exercise, especially weight lifting, will cause damage to the muscles in the form of micro tears. These rips develop in the muscle fibers because your body is not strong enough to withstand constant exertion and weight lifting. These tears are repaired after a workout, and the body requires sleep and good nutrition to make the repairs.
During the muscle repair process, the tears are restored and new muscle fibers build in the area. The new fibers make the muscles larger and stronger so they can exert more energy in the future. Collagen is used to build the new fibers during a process called protein synthesis. Protein synthesis happens when the proteins that are consumed by the body are converted into collagen. The fibrous tissues are then laid down across and over the top of the muscle tears.
Since protein is an essential nutrient used for a wide variety of different body processes, you will need an excess of protein to rebuild muscles. Muscle repair and protein synthesis will happen rapidly during the two or three hours immediately after you work out or lift weights. This means that consuming the nutrient immediately after you exercise is best to assist with muscle growth.
How Do You Create A Protein-Rich Shake?
Protein-rich shakes are the easiest way to increase your protein intake. Create the shake in your blender by adding two scoops or one-eighth to one-quarter of a cup of whey protein. Whey protein contains a great deal of amino acids and is made from milk protein. The powder is also broken down by the digestive system fairly quickly so the muscles get the protein they need.
Add one cup of either soy or low-fat milk to the blender. The fluid will add more protein to the mix and so will a handful of nuts. Almonds contain the most protein of all the nuts. Walnuts and pecans also contain a good deal of the nutrient and are a good addition to your workout shake. If you do not want to add nuts or if you want to add a bit of sweetness to the shake, then add a spoonful of peanut butter instead.
Add a tablespoon of sunflower seeds to the mix as well. The seeds contain vitamin B6 to help the body break down protein so it can be used by the body. You can add a bit of vanilla extract or some chocolate powder for taste as well. Once all the ingredients are in the blender, place the lid on top. Mix the shake well with the pulse button. Drink the shake immediately afterwards.
If you want to build muscle after a workout, then you need to make sure that your body has more than enough protein to build new tissues. Enjoying a protein shake after weight lifting is a good way to provide the nutrient in abundance immediately after your strength training session. Contact a company like ARD Nutrition for more information.