Many professional trainers recommend taking supplemental protein as part of a workout regimen. The timing of your intake and the amount of protein you consume determines how it affects your body. The form of protein you choose is also important, and the type of workout you’re doing can be associated with specific protein demands. Here are a few tips to help you decide which types of protein supplements are best for your workout type.
Protein for Strength and Resistance Training
Strength and resistance training is designed to improve bone and muscle strength. If you’re serious about this type of conditioning, you should be supplementing with about 20 to 40 grams of protein after your workout to maintain your body’s rate of muscle protein synthesis. A fat-digesting whey or plant-based protein is ideal. Consider a soy, rice, pea or hemp protein powder to obtain the important amino acids your muscles need.
Workouts designed to improve flexibility and range of motion keep you supple and improve overall agility and strength. Most involve intense stretching routines, and many also focus on muscle growth. The amino acids in protein help repair the damage that occurs naturally as muscle development advances. Whey- or casein-based protein shakes or solid protein bars that provide about 20 grams of protein can help you recover and get faster results from your efforts.
Aerobics and Cardiovascular Training
Cardio and aerobic workouts are great choices for increasing stamina and endurance and promoting weight loss. General protein supplements of all types are effective, but if you’re trying to reduce your fat intake, consider using a whey isolate supplement. It’s virtually fat-free and readily available in many products. If you’re avoiding carbohydrates or dairy products, egg white protein is ideal.
Core and Balance Workouts
If your workout focuses on core stability, balance and coordination, you may benefit from a protein supplement taken before it begins. A 20-gram dose is sufficient, and highly concentrated forms are preferable to avoid overfilling your stomach, which can interfere with your comfort level during your workout. A whey- or casein-based shake shortly after the workout helps replenish amino acids and supports recovery.
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