A Winning Combo!
What you do immediately after your workout is just as important as your workout itself. When endurance athletes start their taking their nutrition seriously, one of the questions they need to answer is whether to consume carbohydrates or protein, or both.
It's important to remember that while carbohydrates are indeed crucial for promoting many aspects of post-exercise recovery, they can't do the job alone; you need protein as well. Studies that compared carbohydrate, protein, and carbohydrate-protein supplements to determine their effects on muscle glycogen storage during recovery from prolonged exhaustive exercise showed that combining protein and carbs worked best.
Protein - ideally whey protein isolate - in your post-workout fuel enhances muscle glycogen synthesis/storage, and provides these additional benefits:
- Raw materials to rebuild stressed muscles - Whey protein isolate is the premier protein source of the three branched chain amino acids (BCAAs - leucine, isoleucine, valine) used for muscle tissue repair.
- Immune system maintenance - Glutathione is an extraordinarily powerful antioxidant/immune system booster; increasing bodily levels of this compound is highly desirable for maximizing recovery. Whey protein isolate contains excellent amounts of all three of the amino acids that comprise glutathione, as well as high levels of the sulfur-containing amino acids, methionine and cysteine, which are required for bodily production of glutathione.
Now that you know that you should consume a recovery meal that contains both carbohydrates and protein, it's important to consume the correct ratio of carbs to protein. While research shows that a number of carb-to-protein ratios - 5:1, 4:1, 3:1, even 1:1 - are beneficial, we believe that the 3:1 carbohydrate-to-protein ratio is the most appropriate for the endurance athlete, to optimize muscle glycogen replenishment and muscle tissue repair.
The best time to consume your carbs + protein combination is within the first 30 minutes after exercise to take advantage of the limited post-exercise enzymes (primarily glycogen synthase) and hormonal carrier availability. Recoverite provides your body the perfect amount of carbs and protein in the ideal 3:1 ratio. Also be sure to take antioxidants after exercise to neutralize cell-damaging free radicals and speed recovery! Following this expert fueling advice will help you attain a strong, healthy, and winning season.