The body uses fuels for energy, storage and synthesis when they are available. Nutrient timing can help maximize recovery from exercise and promote post-exercise adaptations in muscles and general fitness. Nutrition issued recommendations for using nutrient timing to maximize physical performance and recovery:
1) Consume meals high in simple carbohydrates shortly after intense or prolonged exercise to restore muscle and liver glycoge;
2) consume free amino acids and protein with or without carbohydrates before weight training to stimulate muscle protein synthesis;
3) consume a beverage containing 30-60 grams of carbohydrate per hour (6 percent to 8 percent carbohydrate solution) during prolonged exercise;
4) consume carbohydrates and proteins during weight training to spare muscle glycogen, prevent muscle damage and promote muscle adaptations;
5) consume essential amino acids (with or without carbohydrates) before or after weight training to promote protein synthesis;
6) take creatine monohydrate (with or without carbohydrates and protein) to promote adaptations to weight training.
The effects of these practices are small, but can be very powerful when combined and incorporated into a well-planned conditioning and sports nutrition program.