More Useful Stuff
Breakfast “Don’t eat upon waking,” says personal trainer and ex-Marine Dax Moy. “It lowers cortisol: you want a spike of this because it’s an anti-inflammatory for muscle repair.” When you eat, add fats from mackerel and avocado to encourage muscle growth.
Mid-morning Have a tin of tuna with kidney beans for slow-release protein and extra fibre. Add a splash of balsamic vinegar, too. This will boost satiety, so you won’t crave any foods that’ll stunt muscle growth.
Lunch There’s more to turkey than its low fat content. “It’s abundant in leucine,” says leading sports nutritionist Matt Lovell. “This amino acid stimulates insulin, increasing the rate of muscle growth in response to hard training.” Serve with nitrate-rich spinach, to improve oxygen usage in your muscle cells, and raisins for a little pre-workout energy.
Post-Workout “If you really need a shake, then go for a natural, vegan protein, says Moy. Mix 1 scoop with a small bowl of porridge. A drizzle of honey will spike insulin, which helps to transport kilojoules to your muscles post-exercise.
Dinner “Forget that ‘no carbs after six’ nonsense,” says Moy. “Carbohydrates help you sleep, which is vital to development when training hard.” Tuck into a jacket potato with steak. Beef is a potent source of amino acids, to speed your recovery while you kip.
Before Bed “End with Greek yoghurt,” says Nedoszytko. “Its casein protein will work with the beef you’ve just eaten to feed your muscles all night.” Sprinkle on some almonds and that’s around 14 500kJ for the day, so don’t go skipping gym sessions.