It has been proven that whatever you consume before your workout can make all the difference where performance and muscle growth is concerned. Taking a pre-workout shake is one of the best ways to ensure huge gains for that workout and every ounce of fuel you get from it will make your workout all the more worth it.
To reap maximum benefits, however, you have to use the protein shakes for weight loss at your disposal well. Below, we discuss some tips on how you can use these shakes to not only help you lose weight but also supply your body with essential nutrients. We will also go over the dos and don’ts that you need to remember when using protein shakes as pre-workout meals or snacks.
How to use the shakes
Add some carbs
Carbohydrates are essential for energy and consuming some carbs before your workout will ensure that you stay energized throughout your workout. Add a banana to your shake for some extra energy. Other fruits such as apples and oranges are also ideal. These deliver some carbs that will help you power through your workouts and the good thing is that they are easy to digest.
Add some caffeine
A teaspoon of coffee will transform your protein shake for weight loss into an energy drink and this is exactly what you need for your workout. Just add the coffee to the blender as you make your shake or simply stir it in to incorporate it into your shake.
Ideal timing is anywhere from 1 hour to 30 minutes before your workout. For best results, have your protein shake for weight loss an hour or sooner before your workout.
The time you work out will determine when you drink your shake. If you work out right after you wake up, then an hour is a long time to wait to start your workout. You can take half a shake before you start your workout and take the rest as you work out. Your muscles will still benefit from the protein kick both during and after the workout. Since the shake also contains a good amount of water, this is a great way of getting both nourishment and hydration before and during your workout.
Use plain water
Water is the most hydrating beverage and for you to successfully complete your workout, your body needs to be well hydrated. Choose to use water in place of any other beverage when making your protein shakes for weight loss. This will only work if your shake comes in powder form.
Protect your muscles by choosing high quality protein shakes
Protein shakes come with different components and it is your job to choose the best protein shake available. Most shakes with whey protein work great as pre-workout meals. The same applies to shakes made of plant-based proteins such as pea and brown rice. Keep away from soy-based protein shakes as these are not only less effective when it comes to building muscle mass and weight loss but they may cause negative side effects. Also, compare different shakes and choose one that delivers the highest amount of proteins in every serving.
Keep the calorie content low
It’s easy to get carried away and think that since you are working out, you do not need to be that careful about the calories you consume. While exercise will help you burn calories faster and generally tone your body, you can only lose weight if you reduce the number of calories you eat.
Ensure that your pre-workout shake remains low in calories. Since most protein shakes are low in calories, incorporating a few additions such as coffee, a banana or an apple will not significantly raise the calorie content. Just keep out any calorie-laden foods, however healthy they may be, if you want to shed some extra pounds.
Limit on fiber
Though fiber is great for you, it is definitely not ideal for a post-workout shake. Resist the temptation to add some fiber-filled vegetables before your workout. This will only slow down your metabolism and prevent you from acquiring the full benefit of your pre-workout shake.
Protein shakes for weight loss before your workout are adequate unless you are a bodybuilder. Though you are going to need loads of energy, you do not have to overeat otherwise you will experience cramps and heartburn and in extreme cases even vomiting. A single shake is enough.