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Protein for Runners and When to Take Them?

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Runners cause damage to their muscles whenever they train. They use them in a way producing pretty strong forces. Further, it may cause those tiny micro-tears across the muscle tissue, especially across the legs.

You need to pay attention to your food to recover fast and prevent injuries. And most of you are aware that protein is the best way to assist with the recovery process. But it might be a bit confusing.

How many of you search precisely for what you need when it comes to protein? From heavy lifting bodybuilders to long-distance runners, most of us might consume flavorless bcaa powder. In fact, a nutrition-packed protein shake has become a post-exercise staple for athletes in all aspects. 

The main priority of having protein is the primary function and recovery. It can be easy to cause overtraining with really intense running. So, it would be best to get adequate protein to recover from your runs fully. This is especially true when you’re following an intense training plan.

Let’s discover more!

The Need of Protein for Runners

Protein needs may vary depending on the person. It may come down to the following things: 

  • The intense training sessions
  • Your body size and type

With these two ways, you can measure the amount of protein you need to take. A general thumb rule is that it may not be lower than .8 grams per pound of body weight. For instance, if your weight measures 100 lbs, then you need to consume 80 grams of protein each day. 

If we mark up a notch to someone training for a couple of competitions a year, they will be doing more damage. Their protein intake can increase to 1g of protein per pound of body weight. This might account for the increase in activity and the higher recovery needs. So, you may have different levels of consumption of protein for runners. They are:

  • Low activity, off-season- .8g of protein per pound of body weight each day
  • Regular runner- 1g of protein per pound of body weight each day
  • Intense training- 1.2 g of protein per pound of body weight each day

Using this as a reference, you may ensure that you are getting enough protein as a runner. 

Planning for Protein Intake

One issue that many individuals or runners face when consuming protein is that it is hard to eat a ton in one sitting. Protein can be very satiating. It makes it hard to eat a lot of it at one time. So, breaking it into small portions can help!

Let’s state that you consume 100g of protein for runners every day. You can say that you will be breaking that up into 5 short eating times. Breakfast will have 20g, snack will have 20g, lunch will have 20g, snack will have 20g, and dinner will have 20g. That will equate to having 100g of protein a day, making it more manageable.

Pro-Tip* The most crucial time for consuming protein is after you finish your workout. Those 45 to 60 minutes after your run is the “golden hour” for feeding your muscles. 

The Best Protein Shakes on the Market for Runners

You’ll find a million different protein shakes on the market now, but which one will work the best?

Runners should go with a protein that contains protein and carbs as well. Plenty of sources may contain both sources. This may help for the following two reasons:

  • First, it will boost the absorption of the protein
  • Second, the carbs are essential for runners due to the need for this type of fuel

Using a protein shake containing carbs can help boost the total intake of carbs. Therefore, it will lead to more energy and a boosted level of recovery. Here we take a look at various types and their strengths.

  • Casein

Casein is the insoluble component of milk. On the other hand, whey is soluble. For this reason, it is much slower to digest than whey protein. Also, whey casein blend protein powder can encourage repair for a prolonged period. For this reason, it is suggested that you consume casein-based drinks before bedtime. 

  • Pea

Pea protein is dairy-free and can be a perfect choice for people who are lactose intolerant. It is also a complete protein that contains all nine essential amino acids that the body can’t make. Pea protein is a better alternative for those individuals who are avoiding animal-based proteins. It is as close as you will get regarding branched-chain amino acids found in whey.

  • Whey

The go-to protein powder for ordinary people, whey is a by-product of the cheese-making process. Whey is the most tested of all protein shakes, and the benefits are that it’s quickly absorbed into the body and can stimulate muscle-protein synthesis quickly. When choosing which protein powder to buy, opt for one with third-party lab test reports and certifications. 

That’s it! I hope you discovered some vital information from this article. Help yourself with muscle growth and repair, and stimulate recovery. Maximize performance along with your goals!

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The Rx Review is an independent fitness website, reporting on the Sport of Fitness, functional fitness news, The CrossFit Games, health and diet related information, and also provides reviews on sports performance products.