The things you do and eat before and after your workout can have a dramatic effect on your results. These are some tips that can help you get the most out of your workouts:
Have Some Whey Protein
Whey protein is one of the most important supplements any strength athlete should have. Studies have shown that persons who consume whey protein shortly before and after exercise have increased muscle mass and strength.
It is also highly recommended to take creatine with whey protein as both can improve muscle strength. With an effective pre-workout powder like the Mesomorph pre-workout by APS Nutrition you can have a healthy dose of creatine in addition to some other energizing ingredients that can make your workout more dynamic and enjoyable.
Drink a Shake After Workout
A protein shake, especially one with slow-digesting casein, is the perfect supplement to take after you’ve finished exercising. It provides your muscles with a constant, long-lasting supply of essential amino acids needed to repair and grow muscle tissue.
Studies show that people who consume a protein shake right after workout increase their muscle mass faster than people who don’t.
Drink Some Tea and Relax
Your body undergoes a lot of physical and mental stress during workout, which increases the levels of the stress hormone cortisol. While that may be necessary during exercise, if not kept under control, high cortisol levels can actually inhibit muscle growth, meaning most of your efforts at the gym may go to waste unless you learn how to unwind and relax when you’re not working out.
There are many different techniques that can promote relaxation, and one of them is to drink herbal teas that have natural relaxing properties. Some examples of such teas include: green tea, lavender, valerian, lemon balm, ashwagandha, holy basil, and many others.
It’s a good idea to have one or two cups of soothing herbal tea after workout or during evening hours, but you can also have them in the morning or afternoon.
Avoid Fatty Meals
High-fat meals reduce the effectiveness of nitric oxide in expanding blood vessels, which leads to reduced blood flow to muscles. This effect can last for up to four hours after having a high-fat meal. Many people take supplements, such as citrulline, before workout for the sole purpose of increasing nitric oxide activity, so eating any fatty foods up to a few hours before you exercise would be counterproductive.
Avoid Sugar and Alcohol
Sugar and alcohol are two of the worst foods for anyone looking to gain some muscle mass. They hinder your gains and make progress much slower, so try to avoid these two items as much as you can. They don’t do your health any good anyway.