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If like us you’ve just taken out the obligatory January gym membership (stay strong – we’re in this together!) then you might have noticed a rather intimidating, albeit inspiring, bunch of women down at the fitness hell hole.
You know the ones we mean – they're in hot leggings and crop tops with stomachs to make you sick and are probably insta-gramming every post with #fitfan #eatcleantraindirty (could anything be more annoying?). The sad truth is, we want their perky bums and toned thighs and know that if you take the gym as seriously as they do, you could look like that. Yes you – don’t be a wet flannel – you can do it!
There is a little cheat to help you on your way. Protein powders might be associated with the big tank of a man dead lifting weights next to you, but we think they deserve a new rep.
Here are all your burning questions answered…
Why bother with it?
To get the amount of protein you need to build muscle strength takes a lot of time and energy (how much time have you spent grilling chicken this month already?) – protein powders are the quick and easy supplements to boost your workout.
But I don’t want to look like a body builder - will they make me put on weight?
Nope. Women simply don’t produce enough testosterone in the body so don’t build muscle like men (and those body building women are doing a lot more than harmless protein!). Plus, protein powder is the lowest cal way to get your protein (more so than that lean chicken breast and spinach you’re scoffing for lunch).
Does this make it healthier?
True, it has less fat but it is still a supplement. Whole foods will always have more nutrients, so you need both.
How do you use it?
We use a shake both pre and post workout. The good thing about a shake before is that it doesn’t feel heavy in your stomach like a slot machine snack does. Post workout we always mix it with potassium rich fruit like a banana, as it helps with muscle recovery (and the agony of walking down stairs the next day... Much appreciated!). If you hate the taste – just pop it in a regular smoothie.
Is it a fast track to a gym body?
Hang on, hang on – we can see where you’re going with this one. It’s a supplement so you still have to put the hours in the gym, it just accelerates the result time. Unfortunately you can’t sit on the sofa in front of Netflix sipping a protein shake and expect your muscles to tone (although that would be wonderful – can someone invent such a thing?).
There are SO many - which one do I use?
Depending on whether you want to lose weight at the gym, just tone up or to help with muscle recovery you’ll need different type of protein powder. The best ones we’ve found are on Protein World and they have separated their shakes into categories depending on what look you’re after.
Right, well I guess we actually have to go to the gym now…