Protein After Cardio & More For Fat Loss Perfection!
Should I eat protein after cardio? What about carbs? Should I avoid fats at all cost?!?
What am I supposed to eat after cardio???
Are these the questions you are asking? Well good, because we will tell you what you need to know.
Most folks are confused about what EXACTLY you’re supposed to eat after a tough cardio session.
Few people really understand the best things to consume after aerobic and cardiovascular training – the kind of workouts that normally are intended for fat burning.
Of course, there are people out there who do cardio “to be heart healthy,” but let’s face it, the overwhelming bulk of gym rats hit the treadmill or stair ste
pper because it helps keep body fat at bay.
By focusing in on your post-cardio meal, you’ll have the ability keep the torch lit even after your cardio session and to maximize fat burning.
You have to approach the post cardio meal with the understanding that the quantities and the kinds of food you eat affect your hormone levels, you MUST take this into account when figuring out what to eat after cardio. These hormones play a direct role in the burning (or not burning) of body fat. OK, let us start with the straightforward stuff.
Protein After Cardio If You Want To Keep Your Muscle
Protein is anti-catabolic, which means it stops your body from catabolizing (or breaking down) your muscle tissue to fulfill your bodies energy needs.
Dietary amino acids taken in whole foods or supplement form can be used directly as fuel after cardio.
Frequently, protein stores are broken down with cardio. That is, along with burning body fat, longer cardio sessions or cardio sessions performed in a complete calorie deficit can cause burning or a loss of your hard-earned muscle. You don’t want that, that will give you that thin but flabby (skinny-fat) look.
Consuming protein after cardio helps keep your metabolism from taking a dive it and can put an end to muscle-protein breakdown, the same muscle that also keeps your metabolism pumping. As a women, just go by the rule of thumb that 25 grams of protein minimum is needed to keeping your metabolism from tanking and keeping from burning through muscle.
Fat Is Not The Devil, But Don’t Get Crazy With It
You probably are well aware that it makes absolutely no sense to eat lots of fat after cardio.
You can simply rely on common sense, if your knowledge of physiology is limited. It is just not a logical notion to chow down on lard after having just jumped off the stair master.
Truth be told, dietary fat is much more easily stored as body fat, more so than both carbohydrates and protein.
That being said, learn how much fat you need for the entire day because fat is very important for maintaining healthy hormone levels.
Having a portion of your designated daily fat intake after a workout is not bad, but I usually try to give my body a couple hours before consuming fats after a workout.
Carbohydrates – Walk The Fine Line For Fitness
Carbs are the double-edged sword of nutrition.
You need them for recovery and hormone balance, yet fat storage can be initiated by carbohydrates. Generally speaking, the more carbs you eat, the more insulin is released.
Insulin is the quarterback of the whole fat-keeping team and regulates the signals that allow fat cells to “open up” and store more body fat. Simultaneously, insulin directs dietary fat into fat cells and drives carbohydrates down fat-storing pathways.
Does it make sense to eat lots of carbs after cardio? Not really.
When you eat lots of carbs, insulin levels will increase, shutting down fat-burning hormones and enzymes released during cardio.
The Two Advantages To Cardio Are:
1. It burns calories, and…
2. The hormonal status in the body alters , favoring the burning of body fat.
Choice of carb type and your carb quantity after cardio changes the hormonal balance. Where cardio improves the circulation of cathecholamines (tiny messengers that target fat cells to break them down) insulin decreases the release of cathecholamines.
Whereas cardio raises the output of hormone sensitive lipase (HSL), a hormone that “opens” fat cells and enables fatty acids to be stripped as fuel, insulin opposes its release and may even spike levels of lipoprotein lipase (LPL), which does the exact opposite of HSL. Fat cells are sealed off by lPL and helps push fuel into fat stores. Thus, it seems best to prevent carbohydrates after cardio-burning hormones elevated.
Yet, little amounts of insulin truly support the metabolism. How?
Insulin is, in addition, anabolic. It stimulates growth and repair of muscles. And, during a growth or recovery state, the body actually steals from its fat stores so as to sustain the recovery or development process to obtain energy. Insulin also supports the uptake of thyroid hormones, calorie-burning hormones, by tissues.
So, with regard to carbs after cardio:
1) A big amount of carbohydrates will shut down the bodies fat burning and reverse the hormonal advantage related to cardio.
2) Bypassing carbs altogether leaves you with “just protein.” Your body constantly needs a tad bit of carbs for support, while protein helps prevent a loss in muscle.
3) A little amount of carbs helps support growth and muscle recovery without shutting off the fat-burning process.
4) Modest numbers of carbs coupled with protein can prevent thyroid hormones from decreasing.
I believe the best bet is to consume 25 to 40 grams of quick-acting protein, like whey protein, egg whites or fish, along with 30 to 50 grams of carbs within 30 minutes of cardio.
Ideally, the carbohydrates should be fiber-based and slow acting carbs, like oatmeal, oat bran, peas or corn.
Fiber slows the breakdown of carbs, permitting them to be delivered in an almost “time-released” manner.
The advantage: slower-digesting carbs result in insulin rises that are average, and moderate insulin is our goal. Insulin that is average offers anabolic or muscle-building support, without reversing the fat-burning state caused with cardio. Simple carbs, such as white bread, juices or high glycemic carbs are fast-acting carbs, these should be avoided because they tend to spike insulin levels, and the resulting spike can undermine fat burning by suppressing fat-burning hormones and enzymes. You can consume a bit more carbs if you take a quality carbohydrate blocker.
As You Can See, Protein After Cardio Is Just The Beginning…
Protein after cardio is important for sparing muscle, but your overall fat burning efforts require more than just protein after cardio. Always be sure to keep a balanced “athletic diet”, which means you will need more protein (especially after cardio workouts) than couch potatoes and a moderate amount of carbs with low fats everyday to get the most fat burn out of your cardio workouts.
Protein After Cardio Photo Gallery!