“What you eat in private, you wear in public.” This fitness quote is so true that it sends chills down my back. No one considers the repercussions when they eat that extra serving, or roll through the drive through instead of cooking a healthy meal. What if one simple fitness tweak could help you fight cravings, battle the bulge, give you better workouts, and prevent plateaus; would you do it?
For the average American, a protein shake a day doesn’t seem like a solution to any health and diet issues. However, from a personal trainers perspective, I see weight loss, increase protein intake, and a whole host of bad habits that get thrown to the way side. Here are 5 bad habits that could potentially be replaced when you add in a simple protein shake.
1.) Late night snacking – Chances are you’ve already eaten dinner when the late night “hunger bug,” begins to itch at your stomach. You go to the kitchen to look for something “light,” and you walk out with a bag of chips, paired with something sweet like ice cream. There goes all that work you did at the gym…. for the next 4 days! When the bug begins to itch, reach for a low carb, easy to digest protein shake. The protein will keep you full and will help you sleep deeper.
2.) Sweet Cravings – This is the number one complaint I get when people burn more calories and change their eating. They miss their “sweet treat.” While it’s not a bad idea to allow yourself a small amount of something sweet, it is wrong to eat the whole box, bar, or bag. Filling up on protein will help you crush sugar craving and allow you to drop inches and pounds MUCH faster.
3.) Workout Crash and Dash – You’ve been hitting the gym hard. Then day 3, and 4 hit. Those are the days when the body starts to run out of steam. To prevent this, I recommend taking BCAA’s to help the body recover. Many of these Branch Chain Amino Acids can also be found in a well rounded protein shake. By supplementing you can prevent the workout crash and help you to workout stronger, and longer through out the week.
4.) Giving Up Due to a Plateau? The dreaded word that no one trying to “lean up” EVER wants to hear. Muscle break down, not enough protein, and stress on the body creates an internal environment that can make it hard to lose weight. By giving your body the protein that it needs it can calm your cortisol levels and prevent you from going into “starvation mode.”
5.) Overeating – This is beginning to sound too good to be true right? You’ll be amazed at how adding even 20 – 30 grams of extra protein to your diet can change your hunger. A lot of my clients use protein shakes as their afternoon snack before they hit the gym and before they hit the kitchen to prepare dinner. The protein shake keeps them fueled up for their workout and less hungry when they prepare their dinner or choose where to dine for the night. This leads to better choices, and less snacking during the preparation of the meal.
Protein Shake Recommendations
Pick one that is low in carbs and steers clear of additives. I always tell clients that vegetable proteins are the easiest to break down in comparison to milk based shakes. For this I recommend Vega protein shakes. My all time favorite is their newest shake that comes with a probiotic formula and collagen for beauty and joint health.
Ditch the excuses, increase your protein, and use protein shakes to help you get ahead on all of your fitness goals. You’ll be amazed at how something so simple can make such a huge impact!