Melatonin, cortisol, and many other hormones in the body have a circadian cycle. They have their own timings, and following that scheme maintains our wellbeing. Similarly, nutrition has its own timing, especially before, during, and after working out. Understanding and following that timing is fundamental to experience real gains.
For more than 25 years, nutrient timing has become a pivotal point in performance nutrition. For example, before exercise, it is essential to maximize your glycogen stores with carbs, especially in cardio and resistance workouts. During their training, elite athletes in strenuous or very long workouts may also need a fast energy source.
Not all of us have the time to plan nutrient-timing strategies before, during, and after each workout. But studies show that the average individual can obtain almost the same effect by focusing on the post-exercise anabolic window.
Post-exercise anabolic window
After working out, there is a window of opportunity to maximize your gains. It is an anabolic window and what this means is that your body is hungry for nutrients and eager to trigger muscle adaptations. If you take this opportunity after each workout, you will see more changes in less time. If you don’t, improvements will be slow, and you may even start to feel stagnant.
The post-anabolic window starts right after you finish your workout and shuts down one, two, or sometimes three hours after exercising, depending on the type of activity, on your metabolism, and on other variables. If you want to play it safe, the recommendation is to consider this anabolic window within the first hour after training.
What can you eat during this time to maximize your gains? Studies show that a significant load of proteins and carbohydrates improves protein balance, increasing protein synthesis after training and boosting the anabolic effects of exercise. This translates into muscle mass and better performance over time.
Missing this window is probably the worst thing you can do, especially if you’re an intermediate or advanced weightlifter. It is then crucial to give your body proteins and carbs as soon as possible during this post-exercise period.
Types of protein we can use after working out
One of the problems with post-exercise meals is preparation time. If you have to drive through traffic and get home to have your recovery snack, you may lose this short window of opportunity to refuel properly. Thus, it is usually best to take your post-workout supplements or meals with you.
You can try different types of protein, and the most common are whey protein and casein. However, if you prefer real food, almond protein is probably one of the best options because almonds have the right proportion of amino acids and have more concentrated protein than eggs.
When it comes to choosing an almond protein recovery meal, Nooty is your best bet. It comes in a convenient pouch that fits anywhere, allowing you to take it with you and eat it immediately after workouts. It also has amazing taste, so good you’ll want to spread it on all your favorite foods at breakfast or even enjoy it as a mid-afternoon snack. And lastly, it’s very effective. It has a perfect 2:1 carb to protein ratio that helps replenish glycogen stores while speeding up the anabolic effects of exercise. Whether you prefer Nooty hazelnut butter, coffee almond butter or chocolate almond butter, Nooty will leave you energized, satiated and craving more of its goodness.