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What's up, fit fam?
Have you ever experienced that really cool moment when other people start noticing your gains? Well, recently, my hubby has been noticing mine, and I'm not mad about it! I'm naturally quite petite in the upper body, so I've been working hard lately on building some muscle on my spaghetti-noodle arms. It's been a very slow-moving process for me, but now that others are beginning to notice my growing biceps, I feel like freaking Superwoman! KA-POW!
My secret? Well, for starters, I target the upper body in strength training at least twice a week, lifting as heavy as I can with good form. This is the most important step in the process, but the second is pretty important too - I refuel with protein after every lifting session.
Now, some of y'all are very extra about your protein shakes, and I like that! If I have time, I love blending my protein with ice, coconut milk, cold brew coffee, spinach, fruits... you name it. But most of the time after a morning workout, I'm in a rush to get out the door and need to gulp down my shake in 30 seconds. Sometimes, a shaker bottle and water is all you need for a quick post-workout refuel.
So, in order to give you an accurate picture of the protein powders I use and love, I've created a list of my top four protein powder supplements for building lean muscle. To keep things simple, I've linked only chocolate flavors of each brand (which is always the best flavor, in my opinion!). Also, to keep the nutrition measurements in each serving consistent, I'm giving you the measurements for a 2-scoop serving of each. Please note, however, that the scoops provided with each brand of protein may actually be considered to be a 2-scoop serving. It's always best to check the nutrition label on the back for accurate measuring. Also, this information does not reflect any mix-ins to your protein shake, so if you're blending in other ingredients besides water, you'll need to factor those in to your nutrition calculations.
TRIED & TRUE
There's a reason this product is named Gold Standard - it's a well-known, widely-used product that delivers on its promise for an effective post-workout protein blend. In a standard two-scoop serving, this protein powder delivers 48 grams of protein, keeping calories at just 240 per serving. And because the primary ingredient in this powder is 100% whey protein isolate, your fat and carbohydrate macros stay in check. Why has Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein stayed at the top of the charts for so long? It delivers a creamy, smooth, rich taste that gives its rivals a run for their money!
If you're on a budget (who isn't?), Body Fortress Isolate Protein is a cost-effective isolated protein that won't break the bank. A standard two-scoop serving packs a whopping 60 grams of protein in a 290 calorie serving! And because it's a concentrated protein isolate blend, there's no need to worry if you're watching your fat and carbohydrate macros. This protein meets a high standard of quality at a low cost, giving you the most bang for your buck.
To be honest, the first time I bought Isopure Low Carb Protein, it was strictly because I found it on sale at Academy. I had just started my low-carb lifestyle and loved the idea of still getting a protein boost after my workout without the added carbs from standard protein powders. I'm so glad that I happened on it, because this has been my vote for best tasting protein ever since! If you've struggled to choke down your protein shake and just can't get over the chalky, watered-down taste of other brands, I strongly suggest you give Isopure a try. It's so rich and creamy that it could double as dessert! With 50 grams of protein and only 220 calories in a standard two-scoop serving, you really can't go wrong with this protein powder.
Quest Protein has quickly become a household name, and for good reason. Not only do they serve up a range of high-protein snacks, but their protein powder supplement works great for baking up your own protein-packed goodies at home. Traditionalists can enjoy this protein powder blend in a shake, serving up 46 grams of isolated protein, 4 grams of net carbs, and only 220 calories per 2-scoop serving. But for those who want to add some protein to their homemade snacks, this blend is specifically designed to bake well (for recipes, go here!).If you're like me and love variety, you definitely want this protein powder in your pantry!