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Old 09-27-2006, 10:00 PM   #1
Max Seid
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After completing the WOD I usually have a light protein shake (only about 115 calories). About an hour after that I will take in a full meal, still consisting of more lean protein than carbs. Is this an efficient way to be building muscle or should I be approaching it differently.
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Old 09-28-2006, 12:13 AM   #2
Gorm Laursen
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Regarding post workout eating, there are to factors to consider. One is the 'window of opportunity' where your body assimilates protein more efficient, and the other is your elevated levels of testosterone, which are especially high after very heavy lifting. Testosterone is a very efficient hormone when it comes to building muscle. That's why you can grow bigger arms, even if not doing any upper body workout, just from heavy squatting. The problem is, that testosterone levels drop to lower than normal, when you eat after exercise, which leaves you in a dilemma: How to get the best of both worlds?

My solution is eating a normal meal 1/2 to 1 hour after workout, when testosterone levels are beginning to go back to normal anyway, but that's because I'm more fund of keeping my testosterone levels high than building muscle (which I do anyway, even though I don't eat right away, and don't eat protein shakes at all).

How to have your cake and eat it too is a question of analysing the WOD and eat/not eat according to it. If the WOD for instance is a session af 3-2-2-1-1-1-1 deadlifting, then you shouldn't worry about getting protein afterwards, because very low rep heavy lifting doesn't trigger muscle growth the same way as more conventional lifting (5x5, 3x10 etc.) does. Therefore if the WOD has a focus on very heavy triplets, doubles or singles of big compound lifts like deadlift, squats, weighted pull ups or bench press, then I'd save the post workout meal for 30-60 minuttes. If, on the other hand, it is a workout like 'Fran' where you operate in a rep range between 21 to 9 and your entire body gets a decent run over, you aren't as testosterone loaded, and therefore can have your shake and your meal in the way you do it now. It's as efficient as it just about gets.

So:
heavy lifting = high T-levels = hold your post exercise meals and drinks

every thing else = window of opportunity = eat & drink right afterwards

For the records I always hold my post workout meals at least 15 minutes, up to 1 1/2 hour, and I never drink protein shakes, regardless the workout I've been doing. And I'm more than satisfied with my rate of muscle growth.
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