Protein Powder Part 2

By: 321go 1 Comment

Next installment…


Once you decide on a protein powder that works for you, there are different options during the day to use it – as a pre workout meal, post workout recovery, or complete meal replacement some other time during the day. But before we get into those choices, I want to point out (again) that if your diet isn’t in check to begin with, we shouldn’t be having this discussion. Make sure you’re already eating real, wholesome food (aka Paleo) before you start supplementing. And remember, real food = lots of meat and veggies; some fruit, nuts and seeds; and lots of healthy fats.


If you need a quick and easy meal on the go, adding protein powder to a few ingredients and making a smoothie is a great idea. As with every meal, make sure you include sources of carbs and fat (think bananas and almond butter) to round out your macronutrients. If you’re following the Zone diet or trying to stick to any specific macronutrient ratio, make sure you count the amount of protein toward your daily goal.


Determining what to consume pre-workout is very individualized and very dependent on the session – will it be CP based (think short, quick bursts of energy, like finding your 1RM deadlift) or will it be more aerobically based like your typical Crossfit workout? Since most of our workouts fall into the latter category, I’ll focus on this situation. In this case, you want to make sure you eat your last meal early – no less than 2 or 3 hours beforehand (anyone ever done Fran on a full stomach? not pretty). The best thing to do is have some protein powder mixed with just water about 30 or so minutes before your workout. It’ll help prevent muscle breakdown and give you a little spurt of energy.


I think most of the questions regarding protein powders come in the context of post-workout nutrition. Again, this is very individualized and very dependent on what your goals are. If your goal is leaning out, I’d recommend waiting as long as possible to eat after a workout, probably an hour to an hour and a half. If you’re already at your desired level of leanness and are looking to improve your recovery, the sooner you can get some fuel, the better. We’re talking between 0 and 30 minutes after the work out. You want protein + carbs to help replenish glycogen stores (fat usually slows down the digestion of these guys so avoid it if you can). Amounts vary greatly from person to person, so it’s something you have to experiment with. The protein is the most important part, and the amount of carbs you consume is dependent on how long of a session. You probably don’t need a pint of coconut water and pureed sweet potato if you just did Grace.

Benchmark WOD “Helen”

3 rounds

400m run

21 KB swings (53/35)

12 pull ups




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