How Crucial is that Post-Workout Snack?

By: Megan Lambert

Apples and almond butter, protein bars, and green smoothies are a just a few examples of snack options that fitness enthusiasts enjoy after workouts.

However, author and fitness expert, Ben Greenfield, argues that eating a snack or a meal after training is not actually necessary. Below is an excerpt from chapter 16 of his book entitled “Beyond Training.” In this passage, Greenfield explains why eating a post-workout snack is not as critical as you might think.

You’ve probably heard about a magical fueling window. From exercise physiology books to magazine articles to websites, nearly every resources on sports nutrition says that after you finish a workout, you have twenty to sixty minutes to replace previous energy by consuming a mix of carbohydrates and proteins.

Here’s what they don’t say:

In every study or experiment that has investigated the benefits of immediate post-workout nutrition replacements, subjects were fed after completing an exercise session that they had performed in a fasted or semistarved state.

Of course you’re going to recovery more quickly if you eat a meal after a workout in which you were completely depleted of energy and 100 percent fasted. But how many of us actually roll out of bed in the morning, hope on a bike, and ride hard for ninety minutes to two hours with absolutely no fuel?

So, here’s the deal: If you’ve had a preworkout meal, or had a meal in the not-too-distant past, there’s no do-or-die need to eat after your workout – especially if you’re still burping up that meal you ate before exercising. This is especially true if you have no other workouts planned for the day, because your body can completely replenish energy levels within just eight hours of normal hunger-driven, real-food eating…

But it does make sense to refuel within that twenty- to sixty-minute window if:

  • You didn’t eat anything before your workout and you’re in a totally energy-depleted state (such as from a hard session before breakfast).
  • You are going to work out again within the next eight hours.
  • You’re trying to pack on muscle as fast as possible (aka eat every piece of real food in sight and lift heavy stuff).

 

5 Stretches to do while Watching TV

By: Megan Lambert

Everyone knows that improving muscle flexibility enhances joint function, muscle stiffness, and overall mobility.

But, let’s be real. Who actually takes the time to stretch every day?

That’s why we are presenting five simple stretches to do while watching your favorite prime-time TV show. First, perform a few exercises to get your blood flowing to the muscles you are going to stretch. For example, you could do 10 jumping jacks, 10 air squats, and 10 push-ups to warm up your upper and lower body. Then, hold each of the following stretches for at least 30 seconds. Over time, your flexibility and mobility will increase!

  1. Couch stretch

Bend one leg and place your foot behind you on the couch. Then, take the other leg and place it in front of the body at a 90 degree angle. You should feel the stretch on the front of your hip and thigh. To make the stretch more pronounced, squeeze your glutes.

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2. Hamstring stretch

Sit on the floor with one leg bent towards the body and one leg straight out in front of you. Reach toward your toes with both of your hands. Keep reaching until you feel a stretch in the back of your thigh.

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3. Back stretch

Kneel on the floor with your arms straight out in front of you. Sit your hips back to your heels to feel the stretch in the large muscles of your back. Slowly reach your hands to one side, feeling a more pronounced stretch on one side of the body and then repeat for the other side.

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4. Cat/cow stretch

Kneel on your hands and knees on the ground. For this stretch, slowly arch your back and then round your back to feel a stretch throughout the muscles around your spine. Continue these two movements for at least 30 seconds

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5. Chest stretch

Place your forearm on a wall or door frame at a 90 degree angle. Rotate your lower body away from the wall so that you feel a stretch across your chest and the front of your shoulder. Move your forearm up or down the wall to stretch the different areas of the muscle.

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How to Stand against the Sitting Problem

By: Megan Lambert

Have you ever heard the saying, “Sitting is the new smoking?”

Dr. James Levine, a Mayo Clinic specialist, coined this phrase to illustrate how sitting negatively affects the body.

But, do you really have a choice in the matter? I mean, you sit when you drive, you sit when you eat, you sit when you study, you sit in your workplace, etc.

Dr. Kelly Starrett, successful physical therapist, owner of San Francisco Cross Fit, and founder of the Mobility Project, has made it his mission to give people a solution to this problem.

Watch the video below and learn how switching to a standing desk in your workplace environment can impact your daily productivity and increase your business’ success. If you would like to watch the entire interview, visit https://www.creativelive.com and search for the “30 Days of Genius” video series.