Episode #175: How Should You Eat Before, During and After Long Workouts?

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In this December 21, 2011 free audio episode: eating for a long workout with Steve Born from Hammer Nutrition. Plus: shipping live bacteria, alcohol vs. sleep, clenbuterol, how much protein is enough, carb to protein ratios, cramping, getting enough vegetarian fat, water and digestion, too much sleep, and back to back marathons?

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News Flashes:

  • This study says nitric oxide is muscle-building, but didn't mention that the NO group had tons more protein too.
  • Interesting. Maybe all the benefits of coffee are just from the withdrawal effect.
  • Do you work in a hospital? Save time & take the stairs. Proven to be faster.


Featured Topic: How Should You Eat Before, During and After Long Workouts?

Photo of Steve Born

Steve Born – Ultra Cycling Hall of Fame inductee

Steve Born, with a decade-plus of involvement in the sports nutrition industry, as well as nearly 15 years of independent research in nutritional fueling and supplementation, has unmatched familiarity with the myriad product choices available to athletes. Steve provides individual consultations to athletes of every level – beginner to professional – and in every discipline of endurance sports, helping them to achieve optimal performance in their training and racing. Steve says, “I derive just as much pleasure helping other people reach their goals as I do my own; it's the best part of the job.”

If you order from www.HammerNutrition.com – be sure to support the show AND get a 15% discount by using referral code “80244”.

As long as you enter the referral code in the section where you are asked “Where did you hear from us”  then referral code 80244 will apply the 15% credit.


Listener Q&A:A donate button that reads - keep the podcasts coming

Audio question from Lisa:
How do they keep bacteria alive in packaging and shipping?

~ In my response to Lisa, I mention the Beyond Organic products.

Audio question from Mark:
Booze + overheating = bad sleep.

Audio question from McKay:
Gaining muscle and losing fat, specifically using clenbuterol.

~ In my response to McKay, I mention Podcast #145 from BenGreenfieldFitness.

A twofer about Protein from Dylan and Brad:

How much protein should you ingest in one “sitting” for optimal uptake? (I know you've discussed protein intake quite a bit on the podcast, and I've tried to search through the posts on your website for an answer but so far haven't been able to run across it.) I've heard, like probably most people, that 30 grams is about all the body can process at one time, but my protein shakes are in the 50-60 gram range. I can't imagine that body just holds on to 30 and then pees out the other 30? But, if I am wasting money by drinking 60 gram shakes, I'd like to know!

Hi Ben,
After a recent visit to a sporting store to purchase protein powder, i was
told by staff that i am a hard gainer and should consume a 70:30 ratio of
carbs to protein. While this has allowed me to gain 4kg of weight in the last 2 weeks, i am unsure of whether this is the best option for a hard gainer to get muscle fast. My ultimate goal is to have a big chest, arms and abs. Could you please advise me on a good nutrition plan and gym routine for the standard hard gainer.
Many thanks
Brad G

Question about cramping from Charles:
Hey Ben & Brockstrap!
I have a history of cramping in various types of races and distances (off-road triathlon, trail running, century ride, marathon), almost always my hamstrings. I usually drink roughly 500 ml of nuun/hr during my events as well as my nutrition (hammer gel or perpetuam usually). I carry endurolytes as a back up. I don't cramp in every instance tho. I was just curious if there was something I was missing, nutritionally or training wise to help remedy this.
Charles Lefebvre

Question about getting enough “vegetarian” fat from Tony:
Hi Ben,
Help! I just watched the Fathead movie as you mentioned on a podcast. I thought it was excellent, however as a Lacto-ovo-pescatarian, how can I implement the ideas raised in the movie?
Avoiding starch and sugar is easy by limiting potatoes and rice but how do I get the extra fat, can I do that with fish, eggs and dairy and not expose myself to other issues such as heavy metal poisoning from the fish or too many antibiotics in the dairy?
Regards, Tony.

Question about water consumption from Kyle:
What is your opinion of avoiding water (or other fluid) intake while eating. I recently read a theory that doing so dilutes your stomach acid, which was claimed to inhibit digestion.

Question about sleep from Dylan:
Hi, Ben. Is there such a thing as too much sleep? I've always thought that my body would wake up when it's had enough sleep. But I typically sleep ten hours a night, and that is coupled with a 20 minute power nap in the afternoon following my workout (alternating days of high intensity interval training & strength training) and lunch. I've read that many pro athletes swear by sleep and napping (some schedule naps and call them “business meetings”–as they are as much a part of the athlete's training as, say, cardio workouts are). Still, I'm wondering if I'm getting too much. Ten hours every night (typically 10pm-8am) plus a 20 minute nap . . . Is that why I'm stuck at 15% body fat???
Dylan Dane
P.S. I am a very fit & healthy 40-year-old male, a competitive age-grouper.

Closing music from “Vowel Sounds” by Brock Skywalker.
Available on iTunes or at CD Baby.

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15 thoughts on “Episode #175: How Should You Eat Before, During and After Long Workouts?

  1. Arthur says:

    I am always looking for ideas like this. I’m going to try these tips. Hope to read more from you.
    Thank you

  2. Suzanne says:

    30 minutes is the sweet spot for podcasts. Longer than that and you can't assure listening in one sitting (or standing). Shorter, more concentrated podcasts would be better. Brock Rox! You are probably getting to a point where you have more questions than you can really answer each week. Why not split the interview into segments and answer questions pertaining to similar ideas on the same podcast. Let's say you interview Jillian Michaels and she hits on realistic ways to help speed weight loss, the mindset of an athlete, and her favorite exercises. You could answer questions on podcast #1 having to do with weight loss logistics, #2 segment of Jillian's interview and answer questions about the mental game of fitness for beginner or advanced athletes, the final podcast #3 could have the final snippet of Jillian and you answer questions about form and function of exercise. Likewise, if you have a guest you think is full of it, you can entertain questions that show your point of view on the same topic. I vote for more but shorter and tighter.

    1. Great suggestions, Suzanne!

  3. steve says:

    Go to two episodes anytime ythe show goes much over an hour – please keep up the great work !!

  4. Catherine says:

    Hi Ben & Brock,

    Love the new format with Brock. I vote for splitting the episodes. Like some of the other comments, I like the Q&As but sometimes I like to skip the interviews, or on the flip side, sometimes I like to go back to just the interviews.


  5. carlos says:

    I did think the last few weeks podcast was getting wayy too long…

    Please split it into 2 releases.

  6. Mike says:

    Hi Ben…Another vote for two podcasts. I love the Q&A, but not always into all the interviews (depends on guest & topic).

  7. @parking_god says:

    Ben, I’d like to see the interview separated from the rest of the podcast. I don’t ride and I don’t run any race longer than a half-mara (and only one of those so far), so I’d like the opportunity to easily skip those interviews that don’t apply to my situation. Thanks for soliciting our input.

  8. Paul Aughey says:

    I vote for two. I love the Q&A and usually listen to the less-technical interviews. Thanks for the options and allowing votes. Great info and it just keeps getting better. I listen to your “Get Fit Guy” series too.


  9. I vote for 2 podcasts!

  10. jeff Hoening says:

    Hi Ben – Great show this week. My favorite comment was "eat until satisfied" or something to that effect. This is common sense, just eat until you are comfortably full, just eat real food. Hammer's a bit overly science-heavy for my taste. We're not smarter than our own body's thirst or hunger mechanism, but we really have messed up the food thing in our society. I do love their Citrus Recoverite product.

    And I like the idea of two podcasts per week – Q&A and Interview format. Also like when the Interview subject is in the title of the show.

  11. @JordanWhyt says:

    Ben, I personally would prefer two separate podcasts. Simply because I get ADD and mentally, listening to two 1 hour podcasts doesn't seem as bad as a 2 hour podcast. :-)

    Love your show! Thanks for all you do!

  12. Kamil says:

    I don't mind both options. So the one podcast is as good as two podcasts :)

  13. kem says:

    Split it please. What a good idea.

  14. @vincelane says:

    Hey Ben – thanks for another great show. I love the longer format, it keeps me going during long days at the office. Keep up the great work!

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