So, ever since I did an interview with Dan John (incredible strength and conditioning coach, based out of Missouri. Check him out here), I’ve been looking for ways to get more results from the same investment. Or if maintenance is the goal, then to be able to get the same results with less effort. But I don’t mean for this to be a strategy to cut corners or be lazy. Instead I want you to think about it as training smarter.
Because let’s face it. We’re all busy. We have a variety of obligations and commitments with our names on them that have to take a priority in our lives. We can’t not go into work. We can’t ignore our families. And we need to spend time with our friends if those relationships have real meaning for us.
So if this is the reality we live with, we need to discover better ways of doing the same things or new things to get better results. And, if we’re going to try something new, it has to be an improvement on the current methods. I mean there’s no sense changing up your training program from 45 minutes to 120 minutes if you’re already pressed for time.
The changes therefore need to be more efficient and extract better results or the same results with fewer downsides.This is incredibly true in training, but just as important in our nutrition!
And what better way to start off a morning than this: SMOOTHIE!
With this in mind I’ve come up with 7 strategies for you supercharge your smoothies. Many of you are already in the habit of having a pre- or post- workout shake of some type so it makes sense to tweak this habit slightly to elicit better gains from your efforts.
So here are 7 ways to supercharge your smoothies.
1. Make your own smoothies. I can’t stress this enough. It’s so hard to control the ingredients you don’t want in your shake and ensure that others are included. Plus, you should know that most gyms that make you a smoothie aren’t using ‘top shelf’ protein. But this I mean you aren’t getting the best protein money can buy. You are getting the protein that leaves the greatest profit margin for the gym. So make sure you get the best quality shake possible by making it yourself.
2. Bring it with you. You will begin hearing more and more about how it’s not a matter of how much you eat but the quality and the timing of your meals. Point #1 above addresses the quality issue. But by bringing your own shake into the gym with you, you take advantage of the window of opportunity that occurs post-workout. By waiting even as little as 30 minutes you are sacrificing many of the potential results you worked hard for in the gym.
3. If milk is the base, use 1/2 a scoop of protein powder. Protein powders can range from 15 grams of protein per serving and up. A glass of milk has of 8 grams of protein. Throw in a banana or some peanut butter and this can add another 8 grams. Your post-workout shake, depending on the quality, should have around 20 grams of protein. So save some of your protein and go with a half scoop.
4. If water is the base, mix in warm water. Some will think this is gross. But the truth is you increase the solubility with increased temperature. In other words your protein mixes better in warm water.
5. Add liquid first, then solid. In chemistry we learned to add the solute (solid) to the solvent (liquid). If you dump your protein in first and then pour cold water on top of it you’ll be sure to have clumps on the bottom of the cup. Not good.
6. Mix in shaved ice for better recovery. I can dig up the research if you’re interested but basically the premise of a recent study was that recovery was quicker and more complete when shaved ice was consumed compared to a chilled recovery drink. Look to add some shaved ice to yours.
7. Get extra veggies. Usually we consider the liquid and the protein for our shakes. Sometimes you’ll hear of people including some fruit or peanut butter as mentioned above. But veggies often get ignored. Spinach, for example, is a great one to throw in. While it may alter the colour of your drink it doesn’t change the flavour drastically, and adds a whole whack of fantastic nutrients!
There you go. Seven ways to improve something you’re already doing and get better results.
Chris okanaganpeakperformance.com ‘always moving forward’