T Nation

Post-Workout Nutrition and Running?

I am doing cross country right now and was wondering if my body “responds” well to carbs and protein like it would if I were lifting weights?

Like are carbs and protein used to refill glycogen levels after running, rebuild leg muscles broken down? Like after my ten mile run today for simple carbs I had 2 cups of fat free frozen yogurt, and then for protein a chicken breast and scoop of whey. Then veggies for complex carbs.

Does my body respond well to this after a run or is just like any part in the day after running?

The question instead is does the run cause muscle tissue breakdown and deplete glycogen stores?

The body doesn’t sit around saying, hey, you played volleyball today buddy, nice try, but I’m not going to refill glycogen stores for that particular type of effort!

Yes. Numerous studies have shown similarities in post-exercise hormonal levels in higher intensity, shorter-duration resistance-training sessions and lower-intensity, longer-duration aerobic-training sessions. Glycogen levels would be depleted. Insulin sensitivity would be very high.

The combination of increased insulin-sensitivity, increased catecholamine and increased growth hormone levels would discourage any fat storage. Testosterone levels would be increased so protein synthesis would be increased. Cortisol levels would be increased too so it is important to consume carbohydrates and protein to get cortisol levels back to normal.

I found the following information interesting:

The following information is sourced from Rasmussen et al., published in the Journal of Applied
Physiology (1), which discusses rates of protein synthesis under several different conditions. It shows
how spending a little time and money on the small things can benefit you tremendously in the long run.

  1. At rest, with increased insulin levels, protein synthesis is increased by about 50% when compared
    with normal insulin levels.

  2. At rest with high amino acids in the blood, protein synthesis increased by 150% when compared
    with normal levels of amino acids in the blood.

  3. After weight training, protein synthesis increased by 100% versus pre training values.

  4. After weight training with high levels of amino acids in the blood protein synthesis increased by
    200% versus after weight training with normal blood amino levels.

  5. After weight training with high aminos in the blood and high insulin in the blood, protein synthesis
    increased by 400% versus normal post workout amino acid and insulin levels. (2,3)

Bretc, those are some interesting numbers man. I think I’m going to lie on the couch all day while taking BCAA’s… at least when I’m not at the gym! :wink: