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What to eat post workout?

What to eat post workout?

Everyone always makes a big deal that they need to have a shake or eat after they workout. But 

what should you eat post workout?

Well it depends on your personal goals, individual macros and even the intensity and duration of your workout.  Below we highlight some more common goals and workout scenarios as well as what you should eat.

Goal: Fat Loss, while toning or maintaining muscle

Workout: Challenging Weight training


If you want to lose body fat and want to recover well so that you can tone up and build some muscle mass, protein is a must! You must have 25-30 grams of protein post workout. You also want to have carbs to help with recovery. This is the time your body will put them to good use. How much depends on your macros but most likely it should be at least 1:1 ratio with protein.  Finally you want to avoid fat during this time. Fat may only slow the digestion of the protein and carbs at this time.

Goal: Fat Loss, while toning or maintaining muscle

Workout: Cardio, Group Exercise Classes

If you want to lose body fat but are focusing your workouts on cardio or group exercise classes then your focus will be on protein!  Now if you are doing a HIIT style workout you want to add some carbs in there as well because if not you will start to feel very fatigued and tired. If it is steady state cardio you can focus on the protein and even a bit of fat.  But not too much, you do not want to have a meal that has more calories than you are burning.

Goal: Gain Muscle

Workout: Challenging Weight training

If you want to gain muscle then you better be pushing your training!  Post workout you want to refuel the tank with protein and carbs!  If your macros can afford it you want more than a 1:1 ratio of protein to carbs.  Depending on how aggressive your macros are you even may be up to a 1:3 ratio.  Again you want to limit the amount of fat to optimize the protein and carbs.  Since you are in a calorie surplus, you do not want too much fat in the diet post workout to avoid too much fat gain.  Most likely you will have your fat be 15-20% of your macros.

Goal: Gain Strength without too much weight gain 

Workout: Challenging Weight training

If you want to gain strength but do not necessarily want to get bigger than nutrient timing and quantity is key!  You want to stay at maintenance calories and focus a large amount of your carbs pre and/or post workout. You will want a higher protein diet to ensure muscle recovery while having the carbs for energy. Spread your protein out evenly throughout the day.  Depending on your training details, have 30-50% of your carbs pre/post workout.  But again the key is to stay in calorie maintenance!

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