Anabolic window is the time period immediately after the workout session when the body’s ability is at its maximum to accept food and transfer it towards building lean muscle mass. The period of anabolic window lasts for approximately for thirty minutes after the training session.
After a hard workout due to catabolism your body loose lot of energy along with loss of muscle protein due to the breakdown of muscle tissue. Therefore to deal with this, bodybuilders consume large portion of protein in order to facilitate anabolism or to build lost as well as new muscle tissue. Along with protein, carbs are also consumed to replenish the depleted stores of glycogen after the workouts.
Thus, eating after a workout equates to optimal health, better nutrient absorption, and as well as enhance muscle growth. Delaying eating after a workout will decrease the ability of the body to absorb nutrients efficiently and may lead to tearing of muscle tissue to meet the energy need of the body.
Bodybuilders thus thrive on the thought of the anabolic window by propagating the fear of losing gains and therefore rely a lot on the consumption of post workout supplements in order to maximize results.
The “window of opportunity” or the “anabolic window” of 30 minutes before and after your training session is extremely essential to maximize repair of muscle tissue and also to replenish glycogen stores. The metabolic machinery during this period is at its peak to absorb the nutrients required for the muscles to grow muscle and also to prevent further catabolism. Thus ensuring consuming enough amounts of protein and carbs within well defined framework of time will give you the desired results by decreasing the release of catabolic hormones like cortisol and increasing the release of anabolic hormones like testosterone and insulin.
High levels of insulin in blood increases synthesis of protein by upto 50% in your muscles. That the reason why it’s extremely essential to take a protein and carb after training. These Protein and cabs nutrients can either be in the form of whole food or in could in form of shakes like whey protein in orange juice or water. Whey Protein gets absorbed and digested very quickly and helps to repair the broken tissues more quickly during this anabolic window.
Two hours after training is a good time to have a meal in order to stop any chance of muscle tissue breakdown. And further after three hours consume a meal replacement shake to replenish the lost glycogen stores in muscles, preserve the lean muscle tissues and replace energy nutrients.