Barbell Shrugged

Post Workout Nutrition: The Window of Gainz – Barbell Shrugged #178

Doug Larson

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  • Any advice for people like me who can’t stomach protein shakes right after working out? I can generally knock down around 10g of BCAAs immediately after, but can’t choke down any protein or carbs. It’s usually 60-90 minutes post-workout when I can handle food or a whey protein.

    • Can you sip the shake throughout the entire workout? …Small bits at a time? If you simply can’t get anything down, eat when you can.

  • What about us late night lifters? My gym time is 10 pm, not sure if I could put down a full meal afterwords before going to bed. I typically have a big protein shake with carbs. Any suggestions? Thanks guys.

  • Hey guys, really helpful post on post-workout nutrition and hopefully now ill be shoving way more food down during the window of gains. BUT I need help on NON-training days. Im 130lbs looking to gain muscle mass, what should my carb-load/meals look like on those non-training days even if I want to gain? Thanks guys!



    • I would still eat some carbs on those days, for sure. Go for “paleo-plus” meals. Eat meat, veggies, nuts, seeds, some fruit, all that. But add in extra calories. No need to skip potatoes, dairy, cheat meals, etc. Just skip that big dextrose shake if you’re not training. Straight food on off days is plenty, I think.

  • I want to get big and strong but I need to lose weight. Any suggestions for my post – workout meal? Same ratios of macro nutrients just smaller portions?

    • Maybe just stick with 1:1 ratio. You still need some carbs to perform well, if loss is the goal. Just error on the lower side at first and see how you feel/respond. Other meals, keep it pretty paleo.

  • Mike mentioned he is into gymnastics now. So am I. Wonder if/how he adjusted nutrition, having what target?

    • I don’t think Mike has any specific targets for macros. He just eats more carbs to fuel big workouts and to recover better afterwards. I think he shares some of his approach on nuggets and pearls this week. That posts soon.

  • Mike mentioned 3Fuel as a protein source post workout but looking at how they recommend taking it, they state prior to your workout. What are your thoughts on pre or post workout?

  • I went into a local supplement store who is connected to a beer/wine brewing place. Anyway I find out the supplement place is going out of business but I still asked if he had or ever had dextrose and he said no. But he says we have dextrose from our beer brewing kits. Is this the same and fine to take with my protein during my workout? Lol

      • Ok thanks Chris. I’m 230 lbs and still trying to lean a bit, however on the fine line of trying to gain strength on the outlaw way program. What would be an adequate dose of that dextrose with my standard why protein shake. I’m using 1 scoop in my post workout shake followed by 80g/40g carb/protein ratio 30-60 mins after.

        Thanks in advance, much appreciated

        • Just try a 1:1 ratio to start, pro/carb. If on tough training days, dial it up a little, closer to 2:1, and see how you feel and perform. I could quote guidelines and stuff, but how you feel matters about all else. Start low and work up. Adjust as needed.

  • How about for a person currently in ketosis-what should a your ideal window of gainz meal consist of? Avocados and rainbows?

  • Hey guys just want to ask a couple questions here.. Everything I’ve read ,which is quite a bit , on post workout nutrition has always said that you should basically eat about .4 g of fast digesting carbs per lb. of body weight in addition to ingesting protein post workout and not infra workout. The only thing I’m struggling with is the advice to actually ingest protein during your workout. Everything I’ve ever read has said not to do this because it pulls blood into your stomach which can lead to performance degradation and induce a hormonal response attached to food digestion which can take away from your work out. Can you dispute this for me, because I’d really like to get a definitive answer. I’ve heard bcaas intros but never protein.

  • Mike had mentioned that he cut carbs for a month and thought he was feeling fine. Afterwards, he reintroduced carbs and felt considerable better. Did he mean eliminating carbs on the whole and then reintroducing everywhere? or just post-wod?
    I’ve been feeling sluggish lately (getting ~8hrs of sleep) and wondering if this could be part of it?

  • If i already add carbs (Karbolyn) to my PWO shake should I avoid carbs at my first meal after working out? I always get tripped up here.

    • If you’re looking to add muscle, I’d have a proper meal with some sweet potatoes or something as well, yes. Wanting to lose fat and only preserve strength maybe? …You can stick with just the shake.

  • Hey guys, it’s really a helpful post on workout nutrition since there are some people like me aren’t hungry immediately after exercise and even thinking that it is one great idea for my workout. Great one!

  • Yo again,

    To clarify, whatever grams of protein in the during workout shake gets subtracted from the 40g? Let’s say 1 scoop of whey is 17g. Do you suggest: A. 1 scoop and a meal (40g:40g) B. 2-3 scoops and a meal (40g:40g) C. 2-3 scoops and a meal (just carbs?) or D. 2-3 scoops to replace the meal? Sorry, dude. I just want to get better and I don’t know anything.

  • Why are you pushing “post workout window” nutrition so hard when its been known since at least 2007 that the 2 hour window theory is false? Your claim that you need to know what to eat (unlimited amounts of carbs for instance) and when to eat it (immediately after your workout)is total broscience. Before you claim to be a teacher maybe you should get up to date on the materials you teach. Only those that sell supplements still spew this crap.

  • And your comment on ketosis: “there will be no gains for you my friend” c l early shows that you are totally ignorant on the subject.
    I eat no carbs on a daily basis.
    I am over 60yrs old and have been lifting since I was 13yrs old.
    I workout 7 days a week.
    I bench 350.
    I deadlift 465 for reps.
    I military press 280.
    Preacher curls 80lb dumbbells.
    Cable row 300.
    You really need to have experience in this game if you are going to set yourself up as an expert. Clearly you know nothing about no carb/low carb/ketosis.

    • Will, it would be helpful if you would discuss more points, and attack less. We don’t view the topic as broscience. Is it 100% true across the board? …No. However, our audience is relatively new to training. Most aren’t eating a lot of food, period. In their case, protein and carbs are a proven thing to do after training. Sorry if you disagree, but there’s plenty of evidence in training and untrained populations that this is a great idea. Athletes in an endless list of sports abide by this, because competing without refeeding is tough. You are strong, great. But maybe you would need more fuel if you took on, say, high volume Crossfit stuff…Or endurance training, whatever. Keep that in mind as you comment. Thanks.

  • Great show!

    I’m wanting to try Dougs protein shake durn the work out, but had a question on the carbs. If I stick to a 1:1 ratio and take in 1/2 the needed amounts, would I still benefit from a gainz window meal after, maybe not as high on the carbs?

    And when you guys mention having Paleo like meals throughout the day with veggies, is it safe to assume you mean lower carb veggies?

    And how high does the carbs of a veggie have to be to advisor it for a normal meal?

  • This was a great episode – There was some contrast in the timings of supplements that were discussed in the show. I am a 170 lb male that is trying to gain strength and burn some fat, I think I have my eating game okay but definitely not my supplements – only doing whey right after training.

    Should I take a 1:1 or 2:1 dextrose: protein during or after my work out?
    I currently take a preworkout that is basically some lactate, bcaas, and is for hydration/mobility (hydrox) and protein after (syntha6).

    Basically I would really appreciate a before/during/after schedule to try for training days. Also any breakfast ideas would be great! I find rice/meat easy after pm workouts but am workouts end up only with a shake and some eggs!

  • Hey Chris,

    Great info as always…my question is, if I do an a.m. and a p.m. work out, do I have two windows of Gainz? For example, a hill run or intervals in the morning and then lifting in the evening.

    Also, adding ‘sugar’ to my shake seems crazy to me, but I trust you guys and just got the big tub of dextrose. We’ll see how it helps with recovery, etc…


  • I really enjoyed this show. I even had to watch again to make sure I didn’t miss too much.

    One of the questions I have deals with two-a-day workouts.
    I do a WOD Mon-Wed at 5AM and then follow that up with a lifting session. The lifting starts around 4 and can last about an hour to an hour and a half.

    I wanted to know what would be best to consume before both workouts and if I should be drinking a post workout shake and trying to eat a post workout meal in the morning.
    Also, would a post workout shake be beneficial after lifting or should I stick to just eating a 1:1 ratio?

    My goal is to get stronger and leaner.


  • Doug mentioned adding dextrose to his shake that he drinks at the beginning of his workout. How much should be added to the shake. I’m considering trying this. Thanks for any advice.

  • How strict are you with the no fat during your window of Gainz? You mentioned improving taste with butter, cheese. Raw milk would only be whole milk. Coconut milk is a lot of fat.

    I presume you are worried about slowing absorption of the protein? Carbs too?

    Is there a limit to the amount of fat? Just for flavor or is a glass of milk or can of coconut okay?



    • Best would be a shake during or right after training, but a bit of fat in your post-wod meal is fine. Glass of milk is a killer growth stimulus.

  • any advice for someone who has no access to a kitchen or microwave after the workout. i usually go to the gym before school or work. i feel like i dont eat enough so im trying to add meals. im usually on the go for about 12 hours plus a day. any advice would be appreciated.


  • I know I’m reviving an old thread here, but I’m considering adding dextrose to my post/during-workout whey shake for the carbs. I’m not REALLY overweight, but I have some body fat to lose, and I’d like to lose it. Would the calories/sugar from the dextrose just make me fatter? Should I still eat a lot for a post-workout meal after the shake it I add the dextrose? Basically trying to slim down more, so is the dextrose a good idea or not?

    • If the real goal is slimming, then you have to manage calories and carbs.

      Train hard, have your shake, but then I would perhaps eat a regular, non-gains meal for dinner or whatever after training. If you sip the shake DURING the WOD, then you can probably add a serving of quality carbs to that post-workout meal.

      The dextrose itself is great. If you’re measuring it out with a target count in mind for each shake, combining with protein, and of course, not sipping on casually between meals 😉 then you won’t get fatter, no. It’s fuel, and you need that to train. So just keep it around training.


      • Thanks so much for the reply (and I love the show, bummed that it’s over, but there are plenty of backlogs to listen to!). For my goals, what amount of dextrose should I put in this during-workout shake, do you think? I usually put 50g of whey. I’m having a hard time believing that putting 50g of sugar (dextrose) into there is a good idea. What do you think? I’ve listened to this episode a couple of times, I’m just looking for an idea for my goals. Thanks a TON, I think you’re the shit.

        • If you trained hard, 50g carbs isn’t much. 1:1 ratio in that shake would be pretty standard. To gain more, 2:1 carb to protein.

  • I train first thing in AM around 5 and usually drink bulletproof coffee afterwards while on my way/at work. I don’t really eat anything else until lunch time and just fuel my morning with the MCT oil/butter.

    I don’t feel like I am taking advantage of the window of gainz so my question is should I cut the coffee and just have a post workout shake/meal or can I still enjoy my coffee and a PWO shake/meal without having too much first thing in the morning.

    Thanks Chris for everything you and the Barbell Shrugged team does.

    • If you have the coffee AND the meal you’d be getting way too many calories. The bulletproof thing is for those looking to lose weight…restrict overall calories. To gain muscle and strength, you need a gains strategy. So, drop the coffee and get in a big serving of protein and carb.

  • Question for Doug, say you are just doing an hour and a half of bjj, I’m guessing not worthy enough for a true post workout meal?

    • I would say it warrants the meal, yes. If gaining muscle is the goal, especially. I know I’m not Doug, but having rolled a bit (with Doug) I can attest to the workload.

  • I had some questions about nutrition so I registered to this podcasts. I heard a few ideas from y’all, ans I am wondering what the most adventageous route is for pre/post workout nutrition. I do Crossfit metcons and skill or strength work after. I was thinking maybe a Creatine/beta alanine/bcaa mix before working out, and a whey protein/dextrose after to replinish. Any advice on changing this idea?

    I go eat a meal about an hour after I finish up at the gym. And I’ve liked the cocoon powder progenex makes for before bed. I don’t just have a ton of money to keep spending on sups, so I was also wondering what y’all think is more valuable than others when it comes to this stuff. Maybe I could just eat a banana after instead of the dextrose, even though it’d be fructose?

    Y’all are awesome! I freakin love yalls podcast. Thanks so much for your help!

  • […] Post Workout Nutrition: The Window of Gainz – Episode 178 – This week on Barbell Shrugged we talk … have the appetite and eating habits of a fussy toddler. That’s just not good enough when high performance is the expectation. Listen, you have full permission in the post-training “Window of Gainz” … […]

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