Quick Rant and How To Make Sure You’re Not Wasting Even a Minute of Your Workout
Man I hate wasting time, it’s a HUGE pet peeve of mine.
I know we’re all crazy busy and that efficiently using our time is something that’s important to all of us.
That’s why I wanted to talk to you about this and how it ties into your workouts.
Wasting my time just kills me – it’s a topic I’m super passionate about and that’s because I’m super busy and have little time to waste.
The way I see it, we have a limited number of minutes on this earth, and every single one of those minutes is precious.
This is something I tell my two teenage girls all the time.
I try to explain to them that wishing the week is over so they can “enjoy” the weekend is flawed thinking.
Every one of those minutes they spend during the week are just as precious as the one’s on the weekend, so they need to make the most of every day. I often remind them that the day that just passed is a day they’ll never get back.
And the same can be said for your workouts.
And that’s why I’m so passionate about the way I workout and the system I teach my clients, because it’s SUPER time efficient with much better results than traditional cardio.
Anyhow, that’s my little rant about spending your time wisely – thanks for sticking with me. 😉
Don’t make the same mistake I did
So you’re probably wondering “What’s your point and why are you talking about wasting time on a fitness blog?”
The point I’m getting at is that we need to apply this same philosophy to not only our workouts, but to what we do AFTER our workouts so that we can make sure that we haven’t WASTED that precious time we spent exercising.
Part of the reason for that is quite embarrassing considering what I know now.
Although I discovered the perfect workout to fit into my busy schedule, I ignored how important the timing of nutrient absorption was after my workout.
My fat loss stalled for weeks…until I realized I was making a big mistake.
To be completely honest, it was probably more because I was too lazy to make sure I ate the right thing after my workout.
And my results suffered.
Looking back now, I wonder how much faster I would have reached my fat loss goals if I was just a little bit smarter about my post workout nutrition.
Live and learn I guess.
Lucky for you, you don’t have to make the same mistake I made.
How To Make Sure You Haven’t Wasted Even a Minute of Your Workout
Look, everyone wants to lose fat faster and easier from exercising.
However most people aren’t doing everything they can to get maximum results from the time they put into their workouts.
The secret to losing more fat from working out is ingesting the right nutrients within “the golden hour” after your workout.
What is the “golden hour”?
It’s the 60 minutes after your workout.
It’s a fact: Clinical studies by top universities have proven the most important 60 minutes of the day to make your body burn off a lot MORE fat and calories than it otherwise would… is within the first hour after finishing your workout.
Within this “golden hour” you should consume food with a 2 to 1 mixture of fast-absorbing carbohydrates, high-concentration proteins and certain other nutrients.
If your body does not get these nutrients it needs within an hour of your workout, you are potentially flushing a lot of your exercise efforts down the toilet.
And without the proper nutrients you will also lose muscle. Lost muscle means fewer calories burned per minute for you.
It’s literally a recipe for reversing your metabolism.
I can hear you mumbling “George, who the heck has time to put a meal together following those exact ratios? You know we’re busy!”
I get that, me too. So I often use a shortcut that’s actually better than a prepared meal for immediately after your workout (And YES – real, whole, organic foods are absolutely your best choices…but not this one time, not for your post workout nutrition.)
My shortcut isn’t revolutionary, it’s simply using a shake to get the proper nutrients I need to make sure I’m not wasting any of my precious time with my workouts.
But the key is what’s in the shake and when you drink it.
Why You MUST Drink THE RIGHT Shake After You Exercise
Shakes are food in liquid form so they digest faster and more easily than solid foods (but please be a “label reader” and make sure that you’re not choosing shakes with artificial sweeteners and preservatives).
This gives your muscles the nutrients they need much, much faster when they are most receptive to them… right after your workout.
Post-workout is the time that the muscles will absorb nutrients like a sponge because you have just depleted the glycogen stores so drastically with your workout. Carbs will be used by your body to restore muscle glycogen. If your post workout shake does NOT contain carbs, your body may actually instead break down muscle tissue for this same purpose.
And if you wait just two hours post workout to consume a meal, your ability to refuel your muscles diminishes by 50 percent, according to a study published in the “Journal of Applied Physiology” in 2002. In fact, some studies have shown that participants who consumed protein immediately after their workout versus a placebo gained ‘significantly’ more muscle size and strength than those who consumed it two hours removed from their workout.
That would be bad.
Protein is best consumed in the form of whey powder. While egg whites, chicken and tuna fish are fine sources of protein, they are NOT the ideal type of protein after your exercise session. These foods are whole foods, and the protein in whole foods digest pretty slowly.
You may have eaten a high protein food in your post workout meal, but by the time the protein is digested and finally ready to be used by your body, a whole lot of time would have passed. This is why the ideal source of protein to eat after your workout is a whey protein powder mixed with some type of liquid thus creating a whey protein shake.
A whey protein shake will be digested by your body much quicker. And whey protein is the fastest digesting protein there is. This is what makes whey protein pretty much the official choice of leading personal trainers as their post workout meal protein source.
So, consume your post-workout shake as soon as possible at the completion of your workout, and surely well within what is called the “golden hour”.
Can’t I Just Have Milk Instead?
I though I’d add this since it’s a question I get from a LOT of folks, and it’s a good one.
The biggest difference between drinking milk vs. a whey protein shake has to do with speed of absorption and the type of protein in each.
Milk protein is primarily composed of casein, which is slow releasing and can take up to seven hours for the body to absorb.
Whey protein however takes as little as 20-30 minutes for the body to absorb. For every gram of protein, milk has 1.5 grams of carbs in the form of lactose, which is slower releasing than a simple carb like dextrose for example.
While milk can certainly be beneficial post workout, to maximize the window of opportunity after a workout, whey protein and a fast absorbing carbohydrate is your best bet in a 2:1 ratio. Ideally, you want a protein powder that already has the carb to protein ratio built-in.
Summing It Up
Eating the right nutrients after your workout will make the most of all of your hard work and time spent exercising.
It will help make your body burn off more fat for days after your workout.
It increases metabolism from accelerating lean muscle growth.
It will help you recover faster.
It will maximize your weight loss results … and with NO extra time or effort spent by you.
It will make sure that your workouts aren’t wasting your time.
Whey protein is by far your best bet to maximize your fat loss and ensure muscle growth.
So let’s make the most of the minutes we put towards our workouts and fat loss goals.
Don’t make the same mistakes I did, make sure you maximize your “golden hour” after your workout and get the right ratio of carbs to fats. Your body will thank you for it.
I hope this has helped you understand why it’s important to consume the right nutrients within an hour of your workout. Without it, you’re not maximizing your fat loss and muscle-building results, but you’re also wasting a lot of time.
Dedicated to getting you fit and firm on YOUR schedule, your friend
Coach George, Body Transformation Coach, ISSA Certified Fitness Trainer & Precision Nutrition Certified Nutritionist
P.S. After years of trying out literally dozens of protein shakes, my favorite shake is one made by the folks over at ProGrade, ProGrade Workout. Between the auto-ship option and the fact that I don’t need a blender to mix it, it’s become my “go-to” post workout drink and it’s not even close.
Try ProGrade Workout yourself here –> ProGrade Workout and don’t forget the super convenient auto-ship option!