If there is one thing we all know, it is that time is a precious resource. Everyone wants to maximise return on the time they invest. With this in mind, I am constantly astounded by the number of people who spend hours a week training, only to neglect the most important component of progress: recovery. Refuelling after exercise is vital to optimise recovery, and ultimately see results.
At present, there is a disproportionately large focus on replenishing protein post training. Big brands have capitalised on this by introducing a variety of sugar free protein shakes, often with minimal nutritional value.
While protein is important for muscle growth, it is only one of many nutrients you need to consume post training to maximise results. Instead, your post workout nutrition strategy should incorporate all essential nutrients, including protein, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals.
Is there a smoothie that can achieve this? There certainly is. I have designed a post workout smoothie which fulfils all these nutrient requirements. Here it is:
- 1-2 scoop 180 Superfood Protein Blend (contains whey protein isolate, organic coconut flour, flaxseed meal, almond meal, sunflower kernels, organic sesame seeds, chia seeds, psyllium husks, stevia)
- 1 scoop 180 Greens Plus (Barley grass, wheat grass, alfalfa, broccoli, spinach, blueberry, acai berry, gogi berry, spirulina, chlorella, kelp)
- ½ cup coconut water
- 1 small banana
Specifically, this smoothie is designed for individuals looking to gain muscle. While I believe that wholefoods are superior to shakes, this smoothie is intended for those who lack time and need a quick, easy and convenient post workout strategy that fulfils all their nutrient requirements. Below I have outlined how each ingredient aids recovery.
Why 180 Superfood Protein Blend?
- Rich in protein: Protein is essential for muscle growth and repair. In particular, whey is a fast acting protein and is therefore absorbed into the muscles quicker than other protein sources. This makes it especially beneficial for stimulating muscle growth. Likewise, whey is a complete protein, meaning that it contains all 9 essential amino acids. This further helps facilitate optimal muscle growth.
- Rich in unsaturated fats: Like many nutrition topics, current literature is divided on whether to consume fats post training for optimal results. For the average gym goer looking to build muscle, I am an advocate of consuming fats post training as they increase satiety, improve brain and nerve function and facilitate the transportation of fat soluble vitamins.
Why 180 Greens Plus?
- Rich in antioxidants and vitamins A, C and E: These nutrients keep our immune system functioning at an optimal level. While ongoing regular exercise helps to strengthen the immune system, long bouts of intense exercise temporarily weakens it. Thus, refuelling your body with immune supporting nutrients will help restore immunity post training.
- Rich in iron: Iron is responsible for transporting oxygen around the body. Thus, maintaining high iron stores is vital for ensuring that you maintain energised throughout your workout.
- Rich in magnesium: When you exercise, you lose key minerals such as magnesium.
Magnesium plays an important role in maintaining normal nerve and muscle function.
Why Coconut Water?
- Rich in electrolytes: Sweat depletes the body of electrolytes which are important for maintaining optimal nerve and muscle function. Coconut is a natural way to replenish electrolytes lost from training.
- High in potassium: Potassium is vital for the healthy functioning of all your body’s cells. Potassium works with sodium to balance the fluid and electrolyte levels in the body, thereby helping to replenish those lost during training.
- Brown bananas are high in simple carbohydrates: When a banana ripens, the resistant starch changes to simple carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates are important to consume post training as they spike insulin, a hormone which shuttles glucose and other nutrients straight to the muscles for optimal growth and repair.
Do you need to stock up on your 180 Nutrition products? Head down to Titan Fitness. We offer a variety of flavors and products to suit all your needs. If you would like further advice on meal timing and food sources you need to see results in the gym, please find my contact details below.
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Written by Alana Willis