T Nation

Timing on Cardio and Eating

Hey all,

I have a question regarding timing. I lift weights 3-4 times a week (usually 4 times) for little over a hour. Then right after I run for about 30 minutes on the tread mill.(I know that doing sprints is better but I live and work in a downtown area so I do not have the luxury of a open space park where I can do sprints. And plus I like running for some reason). Then it takes me about 15 minutes to go home before I take my protein powder. Then another 30 minutes to cook up a meal and eat.

So to break it down it takes me about 45min to take protein after my weight training session since I do cardio for 30 min and it takes me 15 min to go home. And about 1 hour and 15 min to get some food after my work out.

Now my questions are…

  1. I’ve read alot of articles saying that doing cardio especially running at a steady pace can reduce your muscle growth after a work out. How much does 30 minutes of running at about 7.5 mph-8mph really affect muscle growth? Although I would rather not do this, would it be better for me to just weight train and go home right after and just do cardio on my off-days? Don’t get me wrong, I have been getting strong significantly over the last 2 months of training, but I want to know if I am slowing myself down by doing this.

  2. Also I’ve read plenty of times, “take protein RIGHT AFTER your workout!!!” But what is right after? As stated previously, it takes me about 45 mintues to do my cardio and go home to take my after workout protein shake. Is that fast enough?

  3. And lastly, I have seen Stu mention 3-4 times to eat carbs RIGHT AFTER a work out. Well it takes me 1 hour and 15min after my weight lifting to get some carb and food in me. Is that too late? How about 45 mintues? Maybe I can pre-make food the night before so I can just go home after my cardio and eat right away.

Thanks everyone for your help.

Bring your protein shake with you to the gym

30 minutes of cardio will not affect your muscle gains. Like bmitch said, take your drink to the gym. I have a 2l bottle that I put 2 scoops of protein, 2 scoops of corn sugar and a little creatine in. I fill it with water and sip it throughout the workout and I finish it in the locker room. You could use Surge if you want.