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Post-workout meal - Required?


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How important is it to eat within 60 minutes of working out?

Me: Crossfitter for the past year. My goals are to become lean, while increasing my strength/overall fitness level. I'm not trying to compete in anything - just trying to be healthy and look good. In general, I'm trying to trim down the last couple of pounds of fat to lean out.

I work out after work, and then head home to make dinner. Due to that, I don't normally eat for at least 2 hours after I complete my workout.

Is this impacting my exercise efforts, or does it not really matter? Should I be eating protein and carbs after I'm done?


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That's a good, complex question. We generally recommend eating within an hour of completing your hard (i.e. high intensity) training session, whether it's a metcon or mostly lifting. In terms of recovery, you'll likely aid in recovery if you get some protein (and, if your session had a lot of metcon-type work in it, some carbs, always from real food) shortly after training. In our view, where you really earn your money with training is not actually while you're at the gym, but when you're recovering afterwards, and an extra meal soon after training helps significantly with that. It also helps ensure that you're getting enough total food in you throughout the course of the day so that you're not underfed when traiing hard. There are arguments both ways, but ultimately, our experience and the feedback from almost all of our consulting clients steers us towards a PWO meal shortly after training. Salmon, tuna, hard-boiled eggs, and poultry are easily- portable options that work well for many folks. Canned sweet potato or pumpkin are good PWO carb options if you need some. Hope this helps.


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