Nutrition Lab #2 | Factors to promote post-exercise muscular glycogen reserves.

Nutrition Lab #2 | Factores para promocionar las reservas de glucógeno muscular post ejercicio.


This article is mainly focused on people who train on consecutive days or stage tests, in which recovery is essential to ensure optimal performance. If you are physically prepared to face this type of training or test, it is essential that nutrition does not harm you and that it helps you achieve your goal.

Here are some key tips for improving muscle glycogen stores. Because glycogen is one of the energy stores used by muscle during exercise. If you walk out with those empty tanks, you almost certainly expose yourself to fainting or muscle injury.

Take advantage of the “window effect”. As we explained in the previous article, the intake of carbohydrates (CH) is best done within 40-50 minutes after exercise because the muscle is more receptive to storage and the food is better used.

Ingest an adequate amount of CH during exercise. A minimum of 30gr per hour is necessary. Did you know that in the Tour de France, cyclists consume up to 120gr / h?

Take into account the type of CH.

  • Glucose and fructose consumption
  • Opt for liquid foods (shakes) whenever possible since the body better assimilates the intake of CH pre-digested or in its simplest format and easier to digest/absorb.
  • It is preferable to eat foods with a high glycemic index (GI) as they stimulate glycogen synthesis better than those with a low GI. In practice: better to eat bread or potatoes than apples or lentils.

Ingesting caffeine is beneficial DURING exercise. Studies to date show that caffeine intake during exercise stimulates the supply of glucose to the muscle. But caffeine has no beneficial effect on glycogen synthesis during the recovery period after exercise is over. The key is carbohydrates and protein. Keep in mind that each person tolerates caffeine differently so it is good not to exceed the amount we usually take.

Add protein. It is important to note that if the intake of CH is optimal/high, the intake of protein together with CH will have no more beneficial effects on glycogen synthesis. However, the intake of protein after exercise helps to stimulate protein synthesis and this is key to improving muscle mass and for the muscle to regenerate after the wear it has suffered and is ready to be subjected to stressful situations again.

Here is a recipe that will help you provide the carbohydrate (energy) you need on your bike rides

Rice bars


  • 100gr of risotto rice (raw)
  • 1-2c / s coconut oil
  • 3-4 dates
  • 50gr of dehydrated apple (or any other fruit)
  • Cinnamon Optional: 1c / p of salt


  1. Cook the rice.
  2. The rice/water portion is 1/3.
  3. Add the coconut oil
  4. Cut the dates and dried apple into small pieces
  5. Mix the cooked rice with the dates, the dried fruit, and the cinnamon until everything is well distributed. In this step, we could add a bit of salt.
  6. Place the mixture in a bag to refrigerate, shape it into a bar, and store it in the fridge for 24 hours.
  7. After these 24 hours, cut the dough into the desired portions of bars and store in silver foil. (We can freeze to use them in the future.