Most of us are familiar with the concept of post-workout shakes: a few hundred calories of protein in a glass that you drink after a strenuous workout, usually within an hour of finishing. They’re a great way to consume some extra protein after a training session, but they can also be taken as a meal (by adding a side of carbs) if that’s what you prefer. Regardless of which you choose, it’s a good idea to avoid doing both. When you’re trying to lose weight, it’s best not to eat more calories than you need to.

sport, bodybuilding, fitness and people concept – young man or bodybuilder with protein shake bottle and bare torso over black background

Are protein shakes and meals after workouts the same thing? They seem to be, but there are important differences between the two that you should know. First, a shake is generally a blend of protein, carbs, and fiber that you may consume as a post-workout supplement, whereas a meal after the workout is meant to provide the body with the nutrients needed to repair and rebuild muscle. Muscle-building shakes are a great way to fuel up on protein and get a nice post-workout pump. Some people even make their own. But with so many options and flavors, it can be difficult to know which is best. The protein shake is the most popular meal replacement supplement and comes in a variety of flavors, from chocolate to coconut to vanilla. There are also meal replacement mixes to add to your favorite foods, like the popular Atkins shake.

A significant meal after an intense workout can be one of the best things for your body. The post-workout meal is especially important for those of us who exercise regularly. After all, protein is an essential nutrient that your body requires after a workout. Every top athlete has their go-to post-workout meal, and for many of them, it’s a protein shake. It’s a beverage that can help increase muscle recovery and aid in muscle development. But that doesn’t mean it’s the only option. A good meal can aid in muscle recovery too. Protein shakes and meals after workouts are the most popular ways to supplement your diet and curb post-workout hunger and cravings.