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Making Pre, During and Post Workout Shakes

Pre, during and post-workout shakes are very important nutrition aspects of every athlete and of every person wanting to become and stay fit. Unfortunately, too much attention is given to shakes and too little to real food ...

Published: January 28, 2016.

My background: I am a 100+ kg endomorph, with a very slow metabolism, Carbohydrate Cycling Diet is practically my lifestyle. I prefer real food, but since I am on 2-3 weekly Full Body workouts (plus cardio sessions), I consider my pre, during and post workout nutrition almost as important as the rest of my nutrition. I am currently on a strict diet, trying to keep as much strength and muscles as possible and to lose as much fat as possible - that is why I have this little stash that lasts for about two months period.

This is my supplement list for making three different shakes:

making shakes

- Labrada SuperCharge Xtreme - preworkout energy booster. I have tried many similar products and I respond very well to Labrada SuperCharge Xtreme, so I use it. Before buying similar products, ask for sample packs - what works for others don't means that it will work for you ...

- Labrada PowerCarb - fast carbs. Labrada PowerCarb si not ordinary fast carb like glucose (dextrose), but it is also much more expensive than ordinary glucose.

- Ultimate Nutrition ISO Sensation 93 - pure whey protein isolate. It is one of the best post-workout meal (PWM) protein powders available. Usually, I use whey protein blends like Ultimate Nutrition ProStar, Dymatize Elite Whey or Optimum Gold Standard 100% Whey, but for short periods, I like to switch from whey protein blend to whey protein isolate. There are, of course, better supplements than whey protein isolate, but they are far too expensive ...

- Ultimate Nutrition Creatine Monohydrate - 'classic' creatine monohydrate supplement. No smell, no aroma, just pure creatine monohydrate powder.

- Ultimate Nutrition BCAA 12,000 Powder - BCAA in powdered form. Not the cheapest supplement around, but if you compare prices of BCAAs gram for gram, it is one of the best supplements around.

- Drogerie Markt C Vitamin - 'ordinary' C vitamin in powdered form. Great for increasing daily C vitamin intake in various shakes and smoothies. When dieting and working out, this is one of the best, cheapest and most important supplements to have.

There is no glutamine supplement on the list. I think that glutamine is not badly needed even when dieting and working out - especially when taken orally. I wouldn't mind one kilo glutamine container during this period, but it also tend to be pricy supplement. I would take it ONLY in PWM shake, 25g, after each workout with BCAA, whey, creatine and of course Labrada PowerCarb. Definitely, some of the glutamine would be 'pushed' into the blood stream, but how much glutamine would be utilized by digestion system even in such conditions, remains unknown. If we ask supplement companies, they would say that almost all glutamine ends up in the blood stream (on the way to the precious muscles), but ... If you want to try - try it!

OK, lets make shakes!

I made three shakes - one pre-workout shake, one during workout shake and one 'classic' post-workout shake.

How to Make Pre-Workout Shake

making pre-workout shakes

Pre-workout shake must give me energy boost and energy in general for heavy workouts. My Full Body workouts sometimes last up to 90 minutes, sometimes even more - it is easier for me to find time to train two times per week for 90 minutes (or more), than to train three-four times for 60 minutes.

Since I am on Carbohydrate Cycling Diet, I mostly east lean protein sources and some veggies with tablespoon of olive or fish oil here and there.

One scoop of Labrada PowerCarb - 25g of carbs - provide me with energy and helps me to go through the workout.

25g of Labrada PowerCarb (or any similar carb source) will be nice energy boost ...

making pre-workout shakes

... especially when combined with two scoops of Labrada SuperCharge Xtreme. Be careful with dieting pills, energy boosters and similar supplements in general - they increase blood pressure, elevate heart rate etc. This in some circumstances can be fatal.

So, first shake is combination of fast carb source and energy boost supplement - Labrada PowerCarb and Labrada SuperCharge.

A much cheaper solution would be a scoop of whey, 25g of glucose (dextrose), and some guarana with 200 - 400 mg of caffeine for a good pre-workout shake. It is not as good as combination of Labrada PowerCarb and Labrada SuperCharge, but when on budget, why not?!

How to Make 'During Workout' Shake

during workout shake

During workout shake is consumed after 15-20 minutes of working out. It should be consumed in small sips after each set, followed by sip of water.

This shake will prevent drop in amino acids levels in blood stream, prevent catabolism and allow us to workout harder and longer. Some trainees don't like feeling of liquid in stomach while working out - in that case, simply don't drink during workout shake, just be sure to have good last solid meal before exercise.

I make during workout shake by combining whey protein and ...

during workout shake

... and BCAA in powdered form. One scoop of whey and two scoops of BCAA are good measure for 100+ kg person.

This shake can be replaced with few amino acid tablets, number of them depends on your nutrition and workout plan - supplements in tablet form are more expensive than supplements in powdered form.


During workout shake should be consumed slowly - within 15 minutes after mixing it with water. Rest of the workout, if you need, drink plain water.

How to Make Post Workout Shake

post workout shake

Post-workout shake is combination of fast carbs, fast protein (amino acids), C vitamin, creatine monohydrate etc.

Add one scoop of Labrada PowerCarb (25g).

post workout shakeAdd 3-4 scoops of C vitamin - around 500mg. Some people are taking 1-2g in PWM, I think that 0.5g of C vitamin is a good measure for me.
post workout shakeAdd two scoops of whey protein ...
post workout shake... and two scoops of powdered BCAA ...

post workout shake... followed by a scoop of creatine monohydrate.

And post-workout shake is finished.

Much cheaper solution for a post-workout shake would be to mix glucose (dextrose) with whey protein blend, add some C vitamin and creatine monohydrate.

Fast carbs and whey protein after workout shouldn't even be considered as 'supplements', but more as regular meal. Adding C vitamin and creatine monohydrate will not make PWM shakes much more expensive and PWM shakes are probably the best time to take creatine monohydrate.

Adding C vitamin with creatine monohydrate will NOT turn creatine monohydrate into creatinine right away - no worries here, especially if you consider strength of gastric acid.

Insulin response after 25g of fast carbs many consider too low, but this is very individual. After all, if you worry about insulin spike, don't forget that whey protein also causes insulin to go high.

Just to be sure, when making shakes with creatine monohydrate - add powders to clean and dry shakers, add water immediately before planning to drink them, shake them and drink - no philosophy here :o)

pre, during and post workout shakesShakes content:

- Labrada SuperCharge, 2 scoops

- Labrada PowerCarb, 2 scoops

- Ultimate Nutrition ISO Sensation 93, 3 scoops

- Ultimate Nutrition BCAA 12,000 Powder, 4 scoops

- Ultimate Nutrition Creatine Monohydrate, 1 scoop

- C vitamin, 0.5g

Don't get me wrong - this is a lot of supplements and they tend to cost a lot. That is why there are 'cheaper' alternative to each of three shakes. On the other hand, when trying to reach another level of athletic performance, visual looks etc, from time to time, it is justified to invest some money in these supplements. And when you go to the gym, you better train like hell - otherwise, you have wasted your money ...

After you finish your workout, drink a post-workout shake and around one hour after, eat first solid meal after PWM shake - lean protein with carbs. If you are ectomorph those carbs should be something like rice or pasta. If you are mesomorph, carb source should be mix of rice/pasta with veggies. And if you are endomorph, like me, carbs should be again - veggies, making it practically a protein + fats meal.

These are general rules, will you follow them or not, it is up to you...

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