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Drinking a Protein Shake After a Cardio Workout

It is very common to question whether or not you should consume a protein shake after a cardio workout. Protein shakes are typically associated with a post-weights workout drink to enhance muscle growth. But what about a cardio session?

Rather than dealing with whether or not you should have a protein shake after your cardio workout, let's actually consider what a protein shake is. A typical post-workout protein shake (whey based protein powder - for example, whey protein concentrate and/or isolate), if highly refined source of dietary protein extracted from cows milk. The benefits include:

  1. A higher quality source of protein
  2. A purer source of protein
  3. A faster absorbing source of protein

Whilst it is common to assume that a protein shake is necessarily designed to build muscle (after all, protein shakes and bodybuilders tend to go hand-in-hand), you may be missing out on many benefits by not consuming a protein shake because of this assumption. These high quality, fast absorbing proteins are highly effective in:

  1. Boosting the immune system
  2. Enhancing recovery
  3. Enhancing your fitness
  4. Enhancing fat oxidation (or fat breakdown)
  5. Obviously, enhancing muscle development

Of course, your training needs to be specific to your goals - a protein shake will not aid in you accomplishing your goals if your training is not appropriate.

Following an intense bout of cardiovascular exercise, your body will be in a state of recovery. A protein shake will encourage the recovery process by providing your body with the appropriate nutrients needed to repair damaged cells. A faster recovery will encourage a greater fitness improvement response. It will also facilitate fat loss and minimise muscular breakdown after your workout.

Of course, protein powder in isolation may not have the greatest benefit in a post-workout shake (be it cardio or weights). By combining this with a fast-acting carbohydrate source, insulin release is encouraged which enhances protein uptake into cells. Examples could be dextrose or waxy maize (including BSN Volumaize).

One thought on “Drinking a Protein Shake After a Cardio Workout”

  • Taylor

    This is great advice. Too many people think protein shakes are only beneficial after strength training workouts. They can be just as beneficial after cardio workouts. I do weights Monday, Wednesday and Friday and cardio Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. And I always have a protein shake or bar after each workout. The results have been great. There are many protein sources out there, but I found that the ones being sold on your website are of great quality!

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