Post Workout “Window” of Opportunity


Post Workout “Window” of Opportunity

In the improvement season, one of the most important aspects of making continual gains is utilizing the the post workout “window” of opportunity. Perhaps taking advantage of this “window” of opportunity is the most important part off the Lean Muscle Gaining phase in the quest to make continual improvements to the physique, yet very often this window is not utilized to the fullest.

The post workout window should be viewed as 2 different segments:

1. The initial insulin spike provided by advanced supplementation for rapid delivery, and
2. The post workout meal

…In this article we will look at different scenarios and aspects of application. People are different in tolerance to and sensitivity to carbs depending on how muscular and metabolically efficient the individual is (or isn’t). Also, one must take into consideration the amount of body fat one is carrying at this stage, and if the individual lean enough to handle a higher carb post workout protocol.

After an intense weight training session, its all about recovery, without proper recovery from training one is already behind in terms of being able to train effectively the next day, let alone to reap the benefits of the workout that was just completed. The first step in recovery is the delivery of BCAA’s to the muscles, along with getting glucose delivered to the muscles to aid in the repair of damaged muscle, getting the recovery/growing process initiated. A lot of the success of this window period is also dictated by how the meal or meals are put together PRE workout (this also has an influence on INTRA workout as well).


To kick off the recovery process, getting a rich source of BCAA in the system in the form of whey isolate is pretty much a given. Hydrolyzed whey with its rapid absorption via reduced particle size basically renders all other whey isolates obsolete in comparison. To deliver BCAA to the muscles in the synthetic insulin free environment we need to spike insulin from the pancreas by implementing a high glycemic carb at the time of ingesting the whey. Using a high glycemic drink in the form of vitargo or waxy maize is of course the norm and is an effective way of spiking insulin from the pancreas. Keep in mind the that the hormone insulin is the most important anabolic hormone we have for delivery of BCAA and glycogen to the muscles. Insulin is a delivery hormone, and is needed to shuttle BCAA and glycogen to the muscle.

Bodybuilders who are lean to begin with, or who have good sensitivity to carbs, or who are very large, and/or all the above can usually handle a higher level of high glycemic carbs post workout. Up to 100 grams of carbs from vitargo, waxy maize, or cream of rice can be used at this point. That being said, there are individuals who do not have great insulin sensitivity and cant process high glycemic carbs well tending to store fat as apposed to glycogen. These people should stay away from a high glycemic rush post workout. In this situation, when the person does not work well with carbs, they are better off getting the whey isolate in, then very quickly go into the post workout meal to get a slow but steady pancreatic reaction to avoid storing of fat. Just because nutrients at a higher caloric profile can be absorbed post training, it does not change the persons insulin sensitivity to carbs. Over time with the right food patterns, insulin sensitivity can improve in these individuals , and then higher glycemic carbs can be more effectively utilized.


Equally just as important as the post workout carb/protein drink, and in many ways more important is the post workout meal.

The post workout meal should be eaten within 30 to 40 minutes post shake. Now that the message from the BCAA has been delivered to the muscle, now its about taking advantage of the metabolic efficiency from the intense weight training and consuming a meal higher in calories than other meals. This should be the highest calorie meal, a lot of people don’t take advantage of the fact that the assimilation rates for food absorption is at its highest at this time.

Take advantage of being able to utilize more more grams of protein in this meal compared to other meals. Try making your normal servings of protein a few oz higher. This is also a good time to utilize white rice, white potato, whole wheat pasta ect. Again, if the individual is not carb sensitive, then even at this meal, they should stay away from a high glycemic source and work with large serving of a lower glycemic source, like sweet potato or brown rice. The benefit here is that there can be good glycogen replacement from a large serving of carbs, but being low glycemic there wont be rapid glucose shuttled to lipid cells as would be in the high glycemic situation for these people with poor insulin sensitivity.

Bump up your calories post workout, and take advantage of the post workout “window” of opportunity!

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