What Should I Eat After A Workout?
What should I eat after a workout?
It depends on the type of workout you just finished. After tough strength training, you’ll want to eat a small snack (about 200 calories or less) that contains both protein and carbohydrates. Protein helps muscles repair themselves after a workout. Remember, working out creates little tears in your muscles. Healing those tears through rest and nutrition helps to build muscle. The carbohydrates in your postworkout snack help deliver the protein to your muscles quickly. Eat a carbohydrate that your body will absorb fast, such as bananas or potatoes. Post workout is one time when slow-digesting carbs, like whole grain bread or brown rice, won’t do.
5 Post Workout Snacks Less Than 200 Calories
- *Protein shake with ½ banana, ½ cup skim or soy milk, ¼ cup water, 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
- Non-fat Greek yogurt with fresh fruit
- Half baked potato (flesh only) w/broccoli (or veggie of choice) and glass of skim milk (8 oz/1 cup)
- ½ peanut butter sandwich: 1 tablespoon peanut butter on 1 slice potato bread
- **1 G2 Gatorade with fruit flavored or plain protein powder
*The optimum choice!
**Lowest in calories–best for after lighter workouts
After a cardio workout that’s light to moderate and less than an hour, I’d recommend just grabbing a glass of water. If it happens to be mealtime after your cardio session, eat a regular balanced meal. In other words, no need to throw in an extra snack unless you’ve done some serious intervals or other intense cardio in less than an hour or exercised for more than an hour. In those cases, see the above snacks.
–Laura DeLallo, Founder, Living Fit
(Laura is a certified personal trainer and weight management consultant. Want to train with her? Visit Personal Training at Living Fit. Want to learn more about her? Visit the About page.)
Photos: (top) by DoctorKan, (bottom) by Sasha Wolf Photography
We want to answer your fitness question. Submit it on the Contact page.