Sunday 6.19.11

Happy Father's Day to all the fathers at The Compound! 

Greg and Maureen found this article and wanted to share it with us.  And since it's Father's Day and there is going to be a lot of protein eaten today in the form of steaks, chicken, etc (at least that's what my Father's Days are like) I thought this was fitting : 

Protein Nutrition and Exercise: What’s the Latest?

This article examines some recent developments in the field of protein nutrition for athletes, in particular those relating to muscle hypertrophy, weight loss, and recovery from intense exercise.

Protein and Muscle Hypertrophy 

The metabolic basis for muscle growth is the balance between muscle protein synthesis (MPS) and breakdown. Positive net muscle protein balance occurs when synthesis exceeds breakdown over a given time period. Protein intake increases MPS; exercise, particularly resistance exercise, result in an interactive effect with the ingested protein leading to the greatest MPS. Interestingly, the interaction of exercise and protein lasts at least 24 hours.

The anabolic response to resistance exercise and protein intake depends on many factors. The amount, type, and timing of intake, other nutrients ingested concurrently, and the precise nature of the exercise all influence the response.


  • Animal protein sources seem to stimulate a larger anabolic response in muscle than plant protein. 
  • The form of protein does not seem to make a difference; food sources and supplement sources    stimulate the same response. 
  • Carbohydrate intake with protein has minimal impact on MPS; however, it reduces muscle protein breakdown thus improving overall balance. Adequate carbohydrate equates to about .3-.6 grams/pound body weight (ex. 160 lb person x .3-.6 = 48 – 96 gms carb) within 2 hours after exercise. A 4:1 ratio of carb to protein is ideal. 
  • Presence of fat may play a role; one study found MPS was greater for consumption of whole milk than skim milk but more studies are necessary to draw conclusions and make recommendations. 
  • Protein intake within 1 hour after exercise may slightly enhance MPS but recent studies are finding the interactive response lasts at least 24 hours. Any protein intake during that time will contribute to muscle synthesis. 
  • Recent findings suggest there is a limit to the amount of protein that will effectively increase the anabolic response; the response of MPS to increasing doses of protein following resistance exercise plateaus 
  • Response increased incrementally up to 20g (3 ounces of meat, poultry, fish, etc.) but no difference occurred in the response between 20g and 40g of protein. 

Protein and Weight Loss in Athletes

Fat loss requires a caloric deficit which inherently compromises muscle growth. It is very difficult to keep MPS ahead of muscle breakdown during calorie restriction. A high protein, calorie restricted diet may be the answer. A recent study of weightlifters found the individuals cutting total energy intake to 60% of normal and eating 2.3 g pro/kg body weight or 35% total energy (at the expense of fat rather than carbohydrate) lost the same amount of fat weight as the control group [who also restricted calories to 60% of normal but ate 1.5 gm pro/kg body weight]. However, the high protein group lost little muscle while the control group lost considerable muscle.

For a 220 pound male, this diet would contain 230 grams of protein (220 lbs/2.2 = 100kgs) and 2600 calories. For a 130 pound female, this diet contains 136 grams and 1500 calories.

Protein and Recovery from Intense Exercise 

Protein is beneficial for MPS and prevention of muscle breakdown but has not shown to improve muscle recovery (i.e. muscle soreness/muscle function). There is some evidence that a high protein diet might prevent the effects of overtraining in endurance athletes but may not outweigh the negative impact of reduced carbohydrate intake in these athletes.

Summary of an article from the Spring 2011 edition of the Sports and Cardiovascular Nutrition PULSE Newsletter; author: Kevin D. Tipton, PhD.

Any thoughts?


  1. I think it's great to see someone with a phd to actually promote eating that much protein. The science seems to change every year or so about how much protein to actually eat for athletic performance, weight loss, etc. However, no matter how much protein is suggested, most of the good studies reach the same conclusion....protein= good for you so you don't fill up on calories with less nutrients per gram (i.e. sugars and grains), improves muscle gain, and aids fat loss.

  2. Happy Father's Day to all our Compound Daddy's! Now go grill up some meat and enjoy a cold one!

  3. 1-10-1 Pushups/Situps

    7:51. Time to pig out.

  4. So now three years and three months into "the transformation" I have experianced some of what was explained above. Year one focused on weight loss. Kettlebell'd my ass off and ate like a bird, 200 lbs. to 175-180. Year two met Erica and Nicole and started "Crossfit Sorta" at Golds, basically metconing our tail off with some weight lifting mixed in at really light weight's. Continuing to eat like a squirrel and lost another 17 lbs. 200 to 157 but when the Compound opened and met the Collin's bro's and Kyle found that I was not as strong as I wanted to be. So to make a long story short..learn how lift weights,increased protien and never give up. Today 163 lbs. as strong as I have ever been and most days feel like Superman. For me it seem's I must eat enough clean food with a boat load of protien to suppliment the intense training we all do. Happy Fathers Day to all and lets keep it up ..Compound Style !

  5. Thanks Doug for the kind words. It's been pretty fun transitioning from a "CrossFit sorta", where Erica and Nicole worked with what they had to get CrossFit out there. Then moving it into a true strength and conditioning gym and watching you all PR like crazy week after week has been a blast!