When To Take Whey Protein?
When it comes to taking whey protein, it makes sense to try and consume the whey protein supplement for the best results.
Let me give you a personal example.
I'll be the first to say that these early protein powders mixed like cement and tasted slightly better.
Secondly , every two days was not enough to affect my protein intake at all.
How was I supposed to know when to take a protein supplement? There was absolutely no information - No forums, no blogs, no Yahoo answers, no information sites (such as building muscle101..hehe), no internet, no nothing. If you were an aspiring weight trainer back in the mid 80's, there was not a whole lot of information to be found, let alone use.
Anyways, now I know.
Whey protein is a wonderful supplement since it contains some great muscle building properties that has one important element that most other protein sources don't have.
That is it's digestibility rate. Whey protein isolate for example (the purest form of whey protein), is one of the fastest acting protein sources today.Once ingested, whey protein isolate can be in your system shortly thereafter.
As well as being one of the fastest acting proteins, whey protein isolate is rich in Branched Chain Amino Acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine).
These amino acids are very important since they help prevent muscle protein breakdown during exercise and appear to preserve muscle stores of glycogen. In other words, whey protein isolate contains the muscle building properties that most weight trainers are looking for. This is very important to understand.
So, let's get back to the question: when to take whey protein?
Alright, so now you know that whey protein is 1) easily and efficiently digested, and 2) high in muscle building branched chain amino acids. All we need to know now, is when to take whey protein for the best results.
I've done some research and done a lot of personal experiments to see what works best. I've come to the conclusion that there are 3 windows of opportunity to put the power of whey protein to it's best use. Here is what I think are the best times to take whey protein:
As soon as you wake up;
40 minutes prior to working out;
Immediately after working out.
Lets take a closer look at each point for the best times to take whey protein.
As Soon As You Wake Up
Remember, that as soon as you wake up, your body is pretty much in a starvation mode. Whether you realize it or not, your body is craving for nutrients and needs these nutrients in order to kick start its internal mechanisms to start building and working. Your body is weak and wants protein. The sooner you can get some protein into your body, the better.
Personally, Ive found that a whey protein isolate drink mixed with some yogurt and orange juice works best. This is one of the more important times of when to take whey protein.
Now this is very important and one that can really boost your weight training results, OVERNIGHT! Approximately 45 minutes after youve consumed your whey protein shake, you must have a full, muscle building breakfast. By doing this, you are jump starting your bodies ability to use the protein effectively and efficiently. Believe me, if you can follow this one little tip, you will soon see your results skyrocket.
40 Minutes Prior To Working Out
If you have some pretty intense workouts, your going to stock up on some fast acting, high quality proteins. Whey protein is very high in branch chained amino acids which are your primary muscle builders. The more branch chained amino acids you have in your system, the better.
I would recommend you ingest a whey protein isolate drink mixed with some carbohydrates to supercharge your workouts.
Immediately After Working Out
Make no mistake about it, this is the most important time to take in a fast acting protein drink. If you were to only have one protein drink per day, this is the time of day to take it. I'm going to very honest here, by simply taking a protein/carb drink right after after your workouts, you will improve your results immediately.
I strongly suggest that after your workouts, you ingest a fast acting protein source such as whey protein isolate and some fast acting carbohydrates.
Why carbohydrates and protein? After an intense workout, your body is in dire need of carbohydrates and protein. The sooner you can shovel in these nutrients to your muscles, the sooner your body can kick start the recovery process. This is very, very important.
Here's a protein drink that you may want to use immediately after your workouts:
½ cup low fat yogurt
Remember to adjust the ingredients to match that of your own nutritional needs. Now, like your breakfast, you will need to follow this up with a full muscle building meal approximately 1 hour later. I am very serious here, because if there is one element that will put you on the track to fast muscle growth, this is it. Have the above noted drink immediately after your workout, no later than 30 minutes and you MUST follow this up with a full muscle building meal 1 hour later.
There you have it. If you can manage to follow the above noted schedule, Im 100% positive that your gains will improve almost immediately.
Now, you can get whey protein isolate at most health food stores. Or if you want, you can order it online at www.bodybuilding.com, or www.musclesurf.com. Since I live in Canada, I order strictly from Supplements Canada. I usually get my order within two days and it's about 15% cheaper than GNC
Good luck and remember to take your protein!
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