Protein Shake Before Or After A Workout?

Protein powder has quickly become the #1 selling nutritional supplement in the fitness industry to date.  A common answer to the question “What supplements do you use, bro?” is protein powder.  If you are new to fitness and exercise, or just getting back into it after taking some time off from the gym, protein powder may be the first supplement on your list, and it certainly should be.  Let’s dive into why protein is such an important addition to pretty much any diet out there.

Why Drink A Protein Shake?

In our fast-paced, on-the-go society these days it can be hard to get solid 3-6 meals a day, as typically recommended by fitness gurus out there.  Adding a protein shake or two to your day can be a great way to hit your protein goal for the day.  A science-based recommendation for protein intake is between 0.8-1 gram per pound of bodyweight if you are maintaining or gaining weight, and can range from 1.1-1.4 grams per pound while trying to lose body fat.

The reason for the difference between the two intakes is because protein helps with satiety as well as the preservation of lean body mass while dieting.  When you are in a caloric surplus, you typically do not need AS MUCH protein in your diet, as your carbohydrate and fat intake will be much greater.  Obviously, you can play around with these macro ranges depending on your own results, but those are the guidelines.

Protein Shake Before Or After Workout..?

Now that we have the guidelines set in place, let’s take a look at another aspect of protein intake: when should one consume their protein shake, and how?  Let me start by uncovering the truth behind the “anabolic window of opportunity” I’m sure many of us have heard.  If you haven’t, basically this means that in the past the recommendation was that you had to consume a shake IMMEDIATELY following a workout, or you could potentially lose your gains (pretty drastic, don’t you think?).

Based on the scientific literature out there, consuming a protein/carb mixture within 2 hours of working out is a much better recommendation.  For those dieting, it is recommended that you consume a carb/protein mixture an hour before your workout, and within an hour after.  For those not dieting, timing doesn’t make as much of a difference because preservation of lean mass isn’t a concern while in a caloric surplus.  With that being said, protein powder can be a very handy tool in your fitness toolbox.  Plus, protein powder tastes great, and who doesn’t want to sip on a nice, tasty shake on their way home from the gym?

What Kind Of Protein Shake?

Whether you are on the road a lot and find it hard to get meals in, a bodybuilder looking to put on muscle mass, or someone trying to lose weight, protein can truly be a fantastic addition to your current diet.  Many people look forward to their post workout shake after they finish a strenuous workout.  Myprotein offers a wide variety of great tasting protein powders that are certified for premium quality and certified as trustworthy by LabDoor.

Now, what’s holding you back?!  Go get some protein!

Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.

Dawid Lyszczek

Dawid Lyszczek

Writer and expert

Dawid Lyszczek is an expert new product developer, food technologist, nutritionist and personal trainer. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Human Nutrition, master’s degree in Food Innovation and Level 3 Certificate in Personal Training. Dawid specialises in evidence-based body-composition nutrition and training for both amateurs and physique athletes, and has been involved in sports nutrition and weight training for over 15 years. Dawid is also a former competitive bodybuilder, UKBFF British Finalist in “Intermediates Over 90kgs” Class of 2013, as featured in Flex magazine. Dawid’s academic area of interest has involved both the role of meal frequency on body composition, and also functional food development, which you can find out more about here: In his current role, Dawid bridges the gap between sports nutrition and food technology, bringing in academic experience backed by real life practice that produces results. You can find out more about Dawid’s experience here:

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