Building a Post-Workout Smoothie for Muscle Growth
By Kait Richardson
Repairing and building muscle starts after your workout, not during!
Therefore, you need to wrap-up your training with the right nutrition to maximize your results and fuel for the rest of your day.
However, eating a meal within an hour of a workout doesn’t always sound appetizing. This is where smoothies or shakes can come in handy. But don’t be fooled- a single scoop of protein powder in water won’t cut it if you’re looking to build muscle and improve performance. Even if you’re trying to lose weight, you need more substance in your recovery drink to make progress.
Post-workout nutrition needs both protein for muscle growth and carbohydrates to replenish your energy stores. Without either, your body won’t fully recover as quickly as it could.
Here are 5 steps to building the perfect post workout smoothie:
- In a blender, add 3/4 liquid of choice. I recommend something lower in saturated fat and added sugar such as unsweetened almond, oat milk, or skim milk.
- Add protein. Whey or plant-based protein powders are easy, but you can also use low sugar vanilla Greek yogurt or even cottage cheese for a thicker texture.
- Include carbohydrates. Frozen fruits, berries, and bananas are popular but you can also add a scoop of old fashioned oats for some variety. I like crushed pineapple in mine!
- A little extra healthy fat will help keep you fuller for longer if you have a long gap between your workout and next meal. A tablespoon of chia seeds, ground flaxseed, nut butter, or sliced avocado are heart healthy choices. If you’re eating a meal within an hour of your shake, you may not need as much added fats.
- Go the extra mile by blending leafy greens to your smoothie! With enough sweetness from fruit or yogurt, you won’t taste the added veg.