Does it ever feel like those scheduled workouts seem to last forever? Below are a couple of simple tips on how to make any workout seem as quick and painless as possible:Bring A Buddy. Working out with the right workout buddy isn't just fun but also provides that extra push you need to go that extr...
We really do become what we eat, especially when it comes to meat. Our skin, bones, hair, and nails are composed mostly of protein. And it also fuels the muscle-growing process known as protein synthesis. Here's a little more on the facts on the benefits of protein:
Animal protein is complete—it contains the right
proportions of the essential amino acids your body can't synthesize on
its own. Many foods, including nuts and beans, can provide a good dose of
protein. But the best sources are dairy products, eggs, meat, and fish.
You'll need to consume 20-25% more plant-based
protein in order to reap the benefits that animal-derived sources provide. And since beans and legumes have carbs, that make it harder to
Most adults would benefit from eating more than the recommended daily intake of 56 grams, and not just for the sake of building muscles. Protein also helps dulls hunger and can help prevent obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
To find out how much you need, step on a scale and be honest with yourself about your workout regimen. Highly trained athletes thrive on 0.77 gram of daily protein per pound of body weight. That's 139 grams for a 180-pound man. Men who work out 5 or more days a week for an hour or longer need 0.55 gram per pound. And men who work out 3 to 5 days a week for 45 minutes to an hour need 0.45 gram per pound. So a 180-pound guy who works out regularly needs about 80 grams of protein a day.
Even if you're trying to lose weight, protein is still crucial. That's because the fewer calories you consume, the more calories should come from protein. So you'll need to boost your protein intake to between 0.45 and 0.68 gram per pound to preserve calorie-burning muscle mass. Every time you eat at least 30 grams of protein, you trigger a burst of protein synthesis that lasts about 3 hours. Your body is constantly breaking down and building protein, even while you rest.
Sticking protein to dinner time is not very efficient for muscle building as it only means your fueling muscle growth a few hours a day, while breaking down muscle the rest of the time. This is why you should spread out your protein intake throughout the day.
Eating protein at all three meals (plus snacking two or three times a day on proteins such as cheese, jerky, and milk) will actually help you eat less overall. People who start the day with a protein-rich breakfast consume 200 fewer calories a day than those who chow down on a carb-heavy breakfast.
So if you're lifting weights and you don't consume protein, it's almost counterproductive. One way to get some protein in after your workouts is to split your dose: eat half 30 minutes before the workout and the other half 30 minutes after. One study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, pinpointed 20 grams as the best amount of postworkout protein to maximize muscle growth. Protein also helps build enzymes that allow your body to adapt to endurance sports like running and biking. Everyone can benefit from the quick hit of amino acids provided by a protein supplement, bar, or shake. Whey protein powder is the best since it's fast-absorbing (15 minutes and it's in your blood stream). It's also a great source of leucine, an amino acid that behaves more like a hormone in your body and really helps in boosting protein synthesis. Casein, another milk protein sold in supplement form, provides a slower-absorbing but more sustained source of amino acids, making it a great choice for a snack before you hit the sack.