Research from as early as the 80’s has shown that athletes who do not consume sufficient amounts of carbohydrates on a daily basis will experience performance decrements and chronic fatigue. Carbohydrate intake post workout is just as important as protein is post workout for muscle repair and recovery. The depletion of muscle and blood carbohydrate stores can contribute to muscular fatigue, especially during prolonged exercise. The duration and intensity of a workout will greatly alter the amount of muscle glycogen utilized throughout the workout, and will impact how much you need to replenish post workout. Anywhere between 20-30g for strength training athletes and around 1-1.2g of carbohydrates per kg of body weight for endurance athletes (2hr+) within the first 30-60minutes of training is needed to adequately replenish muscle glycogen stores. This time period is when glycogen re-synthesis is at its highest, placing a significant importance on the consumption of carbohydrates post workout. An inability to do so will cause your body to break down other nutrients to try and replenish its lost stores. The time between workouts, especially if it’s less than 8 hours, only further emphasizes the importance of immediate glycogen replenishment post workout.
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