Protein Shakes Before or After a Workout for Weight Loss?
Protein shakes can be used before exercise for energy during your workouts and after exercise as part of your recovery. When you consume a protein shake can help optimize your workout to burn more calories and maintain muscle mass. For the best approach to losing weight, follow a low-calorie diet while you engage in an exercise program.
You can have the protein shake before exercise as long as you don’t eat too close to your workout. A protein shake consumed right before your workout may cause you to experience stomach discomfort during exercise. Instead, you can have the protein shake as part of a meal two to four hours before your workout. Pair the protein shake with a carbohydrate option, such as a bagel, piece of fruit or serving of cereal.
- You can have the protein shake before exercise as long as you don’t eat too close to your workout.
- Instead, you can have the protein shake as part of a meal two to four hours before your workout.
Diet for Intense Workouts
Within 30 minutes of your workout, take one serving of a protein shake. The advantage of consuming protein after exercise is that the nutrient will help aid in the repair and recovery of your muscles. According to nutritionist Dr. Jose Antonio from the International Society of Sports Nutrition, whey protein shakes are ideal for muscle recovery because they can be absorbed quickly into the body.
The type of exercise you do will affect whether or not you need a protein shake for your workout. If you are not participating in high intensity forms of exercise or strength training workouts, you may not need the extra protein from shakes. According to “Fitness” magazine, moderate sessions of exercise typically do not need a sports supplement for recovery.
Pros and Cons of Sport Drinks
Protein shakes can add a lot of extra calories to your diet. To keep the number of calories low in protein shakes, check the calorie content printed on the nutritional label. Also, if you need to prepare the shake with milk, use skim milk instead of low-fat and full fat varieties.
Diet for Intense Workouts
Pros and Cons of Sport Drinks
Does Exercise Cause an Adrenaline Rush?
Are Power Bars Good for You?
Good Snacks After a Workout to Lose Weight
Bodybuilding and Shredded Wheat Cereal
Nutritional Value of Gold's Gym Shakes
Nutrition for 10K Training
Do Protein Shakes Give You Instant Energy?
Whey & Testosterone
- TeensHealth; A Guide to Eating for Sports
- "Fitness" magazine; Alternative Energy: Do Energy Gels and Supplements Really Work?
- McColl P. 9 things to know about how the body uses protein to repair muscle tissue. ACE Fitness. Updated March 5, 2018.
- Jäger R, Kerksick CM, Campbell BI, et al. International Society of Sports Nutrition Position Stand: Protein and exercise. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2017;14:20. doi:10.1186/s12970-017-0177-8
- Snijders T, Trommelen J, Kouw IWK, Holwerda AM, Verdijk LB, Van Loon LJC. The impact of pre-sleep protein ingestion on the skeletal muscle adaptive response to exercise in humans: An update. Front Nutr. 2019;6:17. doi:10.3389/fnut.2019.00017
- Holwerda AM, Kouw IW, Trommelen J, et al. Physical activity performed in the evening increases the overnight muscle protein synthetic response to presleep protein ingestion in older men. J Nutr. 2016;146(7):1307-14. doi:10.3945/jn.116.230086
- Kouw IW, Holwerda AM, Trommelen J, et al. Protein ingestion before sleep increases overnight muscle protein synthesis rates in healthy older men: A randomized controlled trial. J Nutr. 2017;147(12):2252-2261. doi:10.3945/jn.117.254532
- Trommelen J, Van Loon LJ. Pre-sleep protein ingestion to improve the skeletal muscle adaptive response to exercise training. Nutrients. 2016;8(12). doi:10.3390/nu8120763
- Res PT, Groen B, Pennings B, et al. Protein ingestion before sleep improves postexercise overnight recovery. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2012;44(8):1560-9. doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e31824cc363
- Snijders T, Res PT, Smeets JS, et al. Protein ingestion before sleep increases muscle mass and strength gains during prolonged resistance-type exercise training in healthy young men. J Nutr. 2015;145(6):1178-84. doi:10.3945/jn.114.208371
- Sahni S, Mangano KM, Hannan MT, Kiel DP, Mclean RR. Higher protein intake is associated with higher lean mass and quadriceps muscle strength in adult men and women. J Nutr. 2015;145(7):1569-75. doi:10.3945/jn.114.204925
- Robinson MM, Dasari S, Konopka AR, et al. Enhanced Ttranslation underlies improved metabolic and physical adaptations to different exercise training modes in young and old humans. Cell Metab. 2017;25(3):581-592. doi:10.1016/j.cmet.2017.02.009
- Pesta DH, Samuel VT. A high-protein diet for reducing body fat: Mechanisms and possible caveats. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2014;11(1):53. doi:10.1186/1743-7075-11-53
- How many calories are in one gram of fat, carbohydrate, or protein? U.S. Department of Agriculture.
- Pritchett K, Meyer EL Eds. Nutrition, Health and Athletic Performance. MDPI. 2017.
- Deeth HC, Bansal N, Eds. Whey Proteins: From Milk to Medicine. Academic Press. 2019.
- Witard OC, Wardle SL, Macnaughton LS, Hodgson AB, Tipton KD. Protein considerations for optimising skeletal muscle mass in healthy young and older adults. Nutrients. 2016;8(4):181. doi:10.3390/nu8040181
- Miranda JM, Anton X, Redondo-valbuena C, et al. Egg and egg-derived foods: Effects on human health and use as functional foods. Nutrients. 2015;7(1):706-29. doi:10.3390/nu7010706
- Marangoni F, Corsello G, Cricelli C, et al. Role of poultry meat in a balanced diet aimed at maintaining health and wellbeing: An Italian consensus document. Food Nutr Res. 2015;59:27606. doi:10.3402/fnr.v59.27606
- Kerksick CM, Wilborn CD, Roberts MD, et al. ISSN exercise & sports nutrition review update: Research & recommendations. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2018;15(1):38. doi:10.1186/s12970-018-0242-y
Heather Topham Wood is a seasoned writer whose work has appeared in numerous publications, including USA Today, Gadgetell, Feel Rich and Step in Style. Heather is a published novelist with six Amazon bestsellers and a contract through Crescent Moon Press. She holds a bachelor's degree in English from TCNJ.