Welcome back! In Volume 1 we broke down the protein requirements needed for basic strength training and why powerlifting is different.
In this volume, we are going to help you to understand what foods and supplements you should be taking in order to ensure the best greatest success in powerlifting.
It might surprise you to hear that the protein requirements for powerlifters, in some cases, could actually be lower than that of traditional strength training. This is because of the type of fuel the body uses in order to lift heavy for a short period of time.
Typically, the body will use a system called the ATP-PC system and depending on the exercise it could even fall over into the glycolytic system (although this is rare).
Typical powerlifting is completed in the 1-2 rep range and only requires about 10-15 seconds of effort.
This short period of high-intensity effort will drain your body of two things - glycogen (from carbs) and phosphocreatine (metabolism creatine). With this in mind, protein is not the bread and butter of strength and performance for powerlifting - but it is still important.
Since you are lifting heavier than normal, you will still be stimulating muscle hypertrophy and overall muscle stimulation. This will require higher protein intake to heal the muscles and have them come back fresh - but when it comes to the energy for training, nothing will beat a carb matrix.
This will highly depend on your personal training, the equator rule (we'll talk about this in a future blog) and what you are used to eating - but as a general rule of thumb, powerlifters should have a diet consisting of about 50% carbs, 30% protein and 20% fat.
I would not personally suggest limiting your carbs on a powerlifting diet.
It is important to remember the goal for powerlifting is generally as much weight as possible (relative to your weight) so decreasing your carbs will do nothing but make you weaker and extend your recovery times.
With this all in mind, it is crucially important that you have a clean and fast absorbing protein source in your diet. We 100% recommended FUEL X30 as the blend is perfect for those who are looking for rapid absorption to heal muscles and have them come back stronger for your next training session.
The last aspect to consider for optimal training is the timing of your protein intake. If you are serious about growing stronger by any means necessary we would recommend you take a protein shake every night and directly after a training session.
Research shows that evening protein consumption can have a much larger and long-lasting effect on total muscle protein synthesis than any other time. Supplement before you sleep and allow your muscles to repair overnight.