What is the post-workout?
The Post-Workout refers to the time just after the workout. And it is the third period of the so-called Peri-training or Peri-workout which is formed by:
Post-workout will only be useful for training or competition days. Using certain post-workout supplements may improve our ability to recover, as well as our ability to benefit from the stimulus produced by the workout.
Why use Post-workout recovery products?
A compelling reason to eat this type of products is their efficiency when it comes to supplying nutrients to our body. When we train, the blood flow increases to the periphery and to the muscles involved in the contraction. If we eat solid foods instead of liquids after training, our stomachs will perform the digestion under circumstances that are more difficult than usual.
Some people may experience this phenomenon and under such circumstances they must simply wait until the body returns to its regular basal state. If our goal is to boost recovery, promote muscle growth, and contribute to better gains, using a post-workout supplement should not be overlooked, since this is the best way to optimize the nutrients supply.
Sometimes, the argument revolves around the quality of the nutrients: post-workout supplements are designed to provide those nutrients that will helps us to achieve our goals, without any other additive.
Another benefit of these products is that we can get just what we need when we need it most, especially if when we do not have enough time.
Benefits of using a Post-Workout supplement
Even though our eating pattern is important throughout the entire day, post-workout nutrition is especially important since it can enhance and improve the following factors:
- Performance and Muscle Recovery
- Reduce DOMS
No matter what our training goal might be, aesthetics, beating personal records, or improving race times, we must always keep in mind that our goal should be to keep going forward progressively.
In the first case, despite the fact that the emphasis will be on gaining muscle mass (hypertrophy), with an insufficient stimulus our organism will react as it normally would. This means that if we do not apply a new stimulus no new adaptations will take place, such as the generation of new tissues, for example. If, on the other hand, the objective is to increase our strength, the type of workout will drastically affect the results. Through the principle of strength progression, we will gradually move through phases or mesocycles, with the resulting gains.
So the benefits of a good post-workout will be linked to an optimal muscular recovery, which will therefore help us to benefit from new stimuli and to advance toward our chosen goal, be it aethetics, strength gains, or reducing race times, as it was previously mentioned.
Therefore, it is important to always keep in mind the idea of progressive improvements in performance, so that we advance toward our goals.
Another important point is reduction of DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness), which is what we have always known as muscle stiffness. It appears after physical exercise and it mainly consists on micro-tears in the muscle fibres, apart from other physiological processes. Through the appropriate use of supplementation, especially of the fast-absorption rate, the symptoms of this phenomenon can be reduced which will result in faster recovery times.
Objectives of Post-Workout Nutrition
As it has been proven in studies, the main factors involved in post-workout nutrition are closely linked to:
- Recharging Glycogen
- A positive nitrogen balance and starting protein synthesis
Training, especially those activities which use glycogen as an energy source, produces a partial expenditure of the energy reserves in the body, those found in muscle and in the liver specifically. When we want to achieve an optimal recovery, providing nutrients with which to refill the aforementioned reserves will be one of the top priorities. It should also be mentioned that glycogen synthesis multiplies two hours after physical activity, only to return to its normal level after this period. Keeping all this in mind, one should measure the required energy intake from carbohydrates during the post-workout period.
While we consume glycogen, the execution of physical efforts produces a series of physiological changes within our bodies. In particular, the structure of muscle fibres will be broken down. In such circumstances, there will be a negative nitrogen balance. This means that we are losing more protein than what we are providing. To solve this issue, we will have to add precisely the same material that we are losing: proteins. They supply the unitary elements that slow down what is known as catabolism (negative balance), which results in a more appropriate hormone environment for the protein synthesis through a positive nitrogen balance. This leads to an optimal muscle recovery.
What type of protein should we use after training
Now the question is: what is the best protein to consume after training? To answer this question, we should be looking for a product that will be able to quickly supply those nutrients that we need the most. If we are looking to maximize the effect, we will have to opt for a hydrolyzed protein.
This type of product is known for its ultra-fast amino acids delivery, since they are found in the form of peptides (linked amino acids). This is the same form that our digestive system absorbs protein. For this reason, this protein "skips" a step in the digestive chain, which provides the highest rate of absorption.
Whenever we use fast-absorption rate proteins we are helping to produce a quick post-workout recovery. We can even prolong the amino acids supply if we use a blend of several protein sources with different absorption rates.
Muscle recovery - types of supplements
There is a type of post-workout and recovery supplements that is called "all-in-one", which provide the most outstanding and beneficial nutrients in one product, according to each manufacturer. Or we can get them separately and combine them to make a formula to suit our own needs, which is possible with the HSN Raw line of products.
Products that have proteins, carbohydrates, creatine, amino acids...
A protein blend is undoubtedly one of the best post-workout recovery supplements. We can find whey, beef, soy, or pea based products which may be concentrates, isolates or even hydrolyzates, depending on their composition.
They are available for immediate absorption.
They support glycogen recharging.