doesn't matter what brand or type of protein
powder you take...if you are taking it at the
wrong time, you aren't getting as much out of
it as you could be. In fact, if you take your
protein powder at the wrong time, you may as
well just dump it in the garbage!
Here is a list
of the when, why and how of effective protein
supplementation, ranked in order of importance.
1. Immediately After A Workout
If you only take
protein powder once per day, this is the absolute
best time to take it. Immediately after you
finish your workout, your body needs raw materials
to rebuild and recover with. If you don't supply
the raw materials through eating, your body
will break down muscle from elsewhere in your
body in order to rebuild the damaged areas.
This is very counterproductive as you can well
By taking in some
protein (20 to 30 grams or so) within minutes
after exercise, you provide your body with the
raw materials it needs to recover without breaking
down its own muscle tissue.
2. An Hour After A Workout
About an hour
following a workout, your body has settled down
from the excitement and is ready to really start
rebuilding. The protein that you took in immediately
following the workout has been metabolized and
your body is looking for more. Another protein
shake at this time is a good way to help speed
recovery. Try to take in another 20 to 30 grams
about an hour after working out.
3. First Thing In The Morning
waking, or as soon after that as you can manage,
take a scoop of protein powder. Your body has
just been through an (approximately) 8 hour
fast and is hungry for nutrients. Feed your
is more quickly assimilated than solid food
and gets into your muscles faster. This protein
shot gives your metabolism a boost, which can
help with fat loss. Be sure to follow it with
a good breakfast, of course.
4. Last Thing At Night
Prepare your body
for the long overnight fast by giving it a little
something to work with. A good combination for
this purpose is to mix a scoop of whey protein
in with a small glass of milk.
Whey is what's
known as a "fast" protein, meaning
that it's digested quickly, while milk protein
(casein) is what's known as a "slow"
protein, meaning it's digested relatively slowly.
At night, you want your protein to be metabolized
slowly so that your body gets a more even supply
over the course of the night. By mixing "fast"
and "slow" proteins, you get the benefits
of the higher-quality whey with the slower digestion
time of the milk.
5. In-between Meals
A quick protein
shake can be a great snack in between meals.
It helps keep your body supplied with protein
all day long. This is especially useful if you
tend to have long periods of time in-between
meals. It could mean the difference between
losing muscle and building or keeping muscle!
6. With Meals
Taking a protein
supplement with meals is a handy way to increase
the protein content of a meal. This is perfect
for when you eat a meal that is somewhat low
7. In The Middle Of The Night
This is a trick
that bodybuilders sometimes use in order to
keep their muscles supplied with protein throughout
the night. Keep a pre-mixed protein shake right
beside your bed. Although some trainers have
been known to set alarms to wake up to drink
it, I prefer to have it there waiting just in
case I wake up, but I don't try to wake up on
purpose. If I don't wake up, it's right there
ready for me to drink first thing in the morning!
This strategy is more targeted for muscle growth
rather than fat loss.
powder is not going to make up for poor diet
or a bad program but it can definitely help
to support you in your training efforts. Take
it at the right time and you'll get the most
bang for your buck!
Amazing Prices on High-Quality Protein Powder?
For more information on protein and muscle,
I also highly recommend the eBook "Muscle
Building Nutrition"by bodybuilding author