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Soy Pre-Workout & Post-Workout Nutrition For Maximal Results

Delicious Protein Shake is Post-Workout Gold!
Proper Nutrition Enhances Recovery
After a Tough Workout
Nice quick &frugal tasty protein on the go!
      If you don't know by now, pre-workout and post-workout nutrition is the most critical aside from what you eat for breakfast. Solid pre-workout nutrition can help supply your body with the energy and nutrients to get a very high quality workout and keep your body in a chemically optimal state. Post-workout nutrition is also critical to maximizing recovery in relation to energy levels, injury prevention, muscle soreness reduction, and muscle mass.

     Ideally I try to time my nutrition not only to optimize daily performance, but also to optimize my daily workout performance and recovery. I like to utilize plenty of soy products to help me accomplish this. Several hours before my workout, I try to make sure I am consuming plenty of complex carbohydrates for long-lasting energy that won't cause a crash. That means whole grains and healthy fats! I usually try to get in some whole grain toast with soy butter or whole grain toasted buns with a tofu burger several hours before a workout. Often times if I am feeling lazy or on the go I will just have Kashi Cereal (lots of soy protein among a plethora of whole grains) with soy milk, or a Kashi Chewie / Crunch Bar. All of that fiber content and healthy fat also helps to keep the Glycemic Index (GI) level low, which minimizes that big spike in insulin and blood sugar levels (in turn minimizing a subsequent crash).

Soy Butter + Whole Grain Bread = 
Great Hours Before Workout!
      About 30-45 Minutes before a workout is a good time to get in a moderate amount of protein and some simpler carbohydrates for quick energy use. I like to opt for a fruit and soy bar like Soy Joy, and a nice glass of Vanilla or Chocolate Silk Soymilk (plenty of quick digesting protein and carbs). That way during my workout I have some long lasting energy from my previous meal hours before the workout, and quick energy / blood glucose and amino acids during the workout from my quick pre-workout snack. This has also helped my clients and I avoid having symptoms of low blood sugar such as sluggishness, dizziness, and sub-optimal performance.

       Post-workout is extremely crucial in my experience, especially after a very difficult workout or when yo are trying to elicit a significant response such as an increase in muscle mass or overall recovery. Your body utilizes a lot of its bodyfat stores during a workout, as well as it's muscle glycogen levels. It depends on the workout you do, but often times your body is in a state of glycogen and blood glucose depletion after a tough workout. Also, the muscle tissue that has been stressed during the workout has microtears that need to be repaired for positive adaptations in muscle mass or strength.

You don't want low blood sugar when you're doing 
Mountain Climbers!
For these reasons, you want plenty of quick digesting carbohydrates and protein within 30 minutes after your workout. Soy Milk, with a scoop of soy protein powder, is a perfect solution post-workout to get in anywhere from 25-35 grams of protein after your workout (or less if needed). Since I usually am trying to put on muscle mass, I opt for about 35 grams of protein so that means about 12 grams of soy milk and 1.25-1.5 scoops of soy protein powder. If you are really trying to maximize muscle building, then also throw in an Odwalla Smoothie or Soy Joy bar for extra simple carbohydrates, and a few more grams of protein. Then you'll replenish your blood glucose and muscle glycogen supplies, and give your muscles plenty of building  blocks for overall repair. After that, you can reap the full benefits of your workout and be ready for the next killer workout!

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