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Shock and Awe, Protein Powder and Weight Gain

Athletes everywhere are bigger, faster, stronger. What we will hone in on today is the "bigger" part of this equation. Studies have routinely shown that the strongest correlation for velocity amongst throwers is body weight.

The more mass you can tack on (without pushing into compromising levels of body fat) will add velocity. Building on this revelation, take a moment to google olympic sprinters. You might find yourself hard pressed to spot one that isn't "bulky". Genuine size and strength will unlock doors you've been dreaming about for years and our strategy for achieving size might be flawed.

The amount of times I have consulted with an athlete pursuing mass about his post workout routine that has resulted in a monsterous helping of "empty protein shake" is more than I care to share. The common association with guzzling down protein shakes is that the end result is larger muscle tissue and elevated mass. This is a misconception (sort of). Let's break down the bodily needs.

For an athlete to create larger muscles he has to put himself into a anabolic state (don't panic, the word actually refers to creating a state that is constructive and willing to build). To do this they have to consume more calories than the body consumes through metabolic activities, daily activities, and workouts. Essentially, the more calories, the more we can build. A rough estimate of a post workout protein shake will contain any where from 250-350 calories. These calories would be fine except for that any athlete who chugged down 40-60 grams of protein lately will tell you that they were quite full for some time. What does this mean for weight gain? Imagine you have 14 hours a day to consume as many calories as you can but 3 to 4 of them were spent feeling like a beeched whale for the lackluster caloric count of 300 calories. Not ideal for weight gain. *Note, I do believe protein shakes play an integral part in strength gain and recovery, but missing out on calories because of a protein shake beyond our appetite limits is counter productive.*

Instead, to those of you trying to "gain", why not cut the protein shake in half. This would curtail the overwhelming full feeling while still ingesting the exceptional BCAA's, Creatine, and other necessary ingrediants while allowing us to crush a caloric monster at the same time. Over a short time the calorie gains would be in the thousands within a week! Who ever said you can't have your cake and eat it too?!?

So for you mass challenged individuals, if there is a will there is a 'whey', and the 'whey' might not be a protein powder!

For more information on how to gain, contact John Snelten at

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