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When you finish a weight training workout, try to eat something within half an hour. If you are ready for a meal, go ahead with that. If not, eat a snack of 200-300 calories, including carbohydrate and protein in a ratio of about 3 to 1. For instance, if you eat 240 calories, that would be 180 calories (45 grams) of carbs and 60 calories (15 grams) of protein. Any dietary fat in the snack adds more calories, but is not needed for recovery. The protein gives you the amino acids you need to build or repair your muscles after a hard workout. The carbs release insulin which is necessary for the protein to enter your muscle cells, as well as replenishing the glucose and glycogen you used for energy. Make sure you take into account these calories when you are counting your daily dietary intake. If you are trying to lose or maintain your weight, take this number of calories out of another meal.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|