Why is Protein Critical to Seeing Results?
If you’ve been into Fuse Fitness Coaching this week you know we are doing German Volume Training and this week’s “Focus On Fuel” blog comes from our very own Luke Smith and is VERY timely. Enjoy!
This week I have the opportunity to talk to you about protein! When it comes to health, protein is a critical component. Proteins form our organs, our hair, our nerves and muscles, and help assemble into hormones. Since my hair is falling out, my organs seem to be working fine, hormones are in balance, and my nerves are good (except when my 3 year old tests them!) I am going to focus on how protein helps with muscle synthesis. More specifically, I am going to talk about the 2 methods to consume protein that can help you be a high performing machine, much like our clientele at Fuse Fitness Coaching!
Method 1: Post Workout Protein
Your muscles crave protein after your weight training workouts. This is especially important because this week we will start the “BURN” phase of training. The primary focus of “Burn” is to increase lean body mass by lifting heavy objects many times. The most effective method to make the most of your workout is to consume a liquid protein drink at a 3:1 ratio of carbs and protein 30 minutes post workout. If you walk into your local supplement store it’s likely that “Supplement Guy” will sell you a protein powder with a 0:1 ratio to have after your workout. I’ve seen it a thousand times.
But wait…. aren’t carbs bad!? Not in this situation. Your body needs carbohydrates to stimulate an insulin spike. That insulin spike tells your muscle cells to gobble up amino acids more effectively. When this happens, your muscles get better recovery, you are not as sore, and you get stronger!
Not sure what to use? Ask your Fuse Fitness Coach about Post Workout Recovery.
Method 2: Meal Time Protein
Your body actually burns more calories digesting protein, in comparison to carbohydrates and fat! Therefore, this increase in your metabolic rate improves your overall metabolism. Another benefit of ensuring ample protein intake is that it is more satiating, making you feel more full and content. It also helps regulate blood sugar levels.
What are good sources of protein? Overall, animal protein sources are more nutrient-dense (contain a complete amino acid profile) and should serve as your primary source of protein.
-Chicken, turkey, pork, beef, lamb, buffalo/bison, seafood, eggs, dairy
-These are most nutrient-dense when they come from pasture-raised or wild-caught animals
Plant sources of protein can be great ways to help increase your overall intake, however in order to meet the same nutrient amounts as animal sources, you need to pair them together (i.e. beans + rice). Sources include: Beans, nuts/seeds, legumes, grains, soy, and lentils.
So how much is recommended? For an adult getting minimal to adequate activity, 0.8-1.0 g/kg body weight is recommended. Older adults actually have a greater need for protein in order to maintain muscle mass and health (1.0-1.2 g/kg body weight), and then adults who are getting moderate activity to intense training should consume 1.0-2.0 g/kg body weight.
Example: if you are 150lbs and engage in muscular development activity you should consume about 130 grams of protein per day. You still need Carbs and Fat though! Carbs should be at 180g and Fat at 60g if you are 150lbs.
Keep it simple though---for starters, just ensure you have some protein with each meal (a palm or hand-sized portion 4-5x per day).
In conclusion, I would like to say that it’s imperative that you understand what changes your body is making from the nutrition and exercise choices you are making. The result of a solid diet and exercise plan should be increasing muscle and losing fat! Get with your Fuse Fitness Coach to make sure you are going down the right path!