Protein. The bodybuilder’s macronutrient. Rarely does a week at JKC elapse without a client asking Jon or myself some of the following questions:

  • How much protein should eat if I want to build some muscle?
  • What are the best sources of protein?
  • I know some people who take protein powder; should I?

To answer these questions definitively for all of you guys, Jon and myself thought it best to write a blog post that details the latest scientifically proven recommendations for protein consumption in the active population (All of you guys!)

How much protein should I eat if I want to build muscle?

The key here is the significance of the muscle building goal. I know that not all of the JKC Fit Fam want to look as swole as Schwarzenegger but if you want people to notice that you have been working out, you will need to build a little muscle in some key areas.

To do this you will need a certain amount of protein to assist in rebuilding your muscle tissue post-exercise. If you were to check Canada’s (very dated) Food Guide recommendations, you would find that they recommend an abysmal 0.8g/kg of protein. For me, that would equate to 78 grams/day. To put that in perspective, a 125 gram piece of chicken breast contains 39 grams of protein. Bang, two chicken breasts/day and I’m done…although I’d look more like Justin Bieber than just plain jacked.

You see, these recommendations are for the “average” population. However, as a member of the JKC Fam, you are considered members of the “athletic population”, that is, you engage of moderate to high-intensity activity multiple times per week, thus these recommendations do not apply to you.

So what do you need? Luckily, a recent study aimed to answer that question. Morton et al. 2018 examined 49 previous studies containing a combined 1863 participants looking for this answer. They found that to maximize effectiveness of resistance training anywhere from 1.6g/kg up to 2.2g/kg were optimal. So you don’t have to worry about the math, I’ve done it for you, simply find your weight in the table below and aim for at least the minimum number listed.

Weight in Pounds Weight in Kilograms 1.6g/kg/day 2.2g/kg/day
100 45 73 100
110 50 80 110
120 55 87 120
130 59 95 130
140 64 102 140
150 68 109 150
160 73 116 160
170 77 124 170
180 82 131 180
190 86 138 190
200 91 145 200
210 95 153 210
220 100 160 220
230 105 167 230
240 109 175 240
250 114 180 250

 

What are the best sources of protein?

Chicken? Eggs? Beef? Fish? Luckily for us, it has been scientifically determined what the best protein sources are. Proteins are rated based on their “biological value”, that is, the proportion of the protein from a particular food that is incorporated into the organism’s (your) body. Take a look at the table below. It ranks the biological value of numerous proteins. As many tables use whole eggs as the “gold standard or 100, this chart will do the same. The closer a score is to 100, the better. Note whey protein powder is much higher than 100, and since the rules of “The Price is Right” don’t apply here, going over is actually desirable. Also, just so you can get an idea for how much you need to eat to satisfy your daily protein needs, I have included the amount of protein in a typical serving of each item.

Item Biological Value Grams of Protein Per Serving
Whey Protein Powder 159 25 g/scoop
Whole Egg 100 7 g/extra-large egg
Cow’s Milk 91 9 g/cup
Cottage Cheese 84 28g/cup
Tuna 83 30 g/100 g serving
Beef 80 26 g/100 g serving
Chicken Breast 79 31 g/100 g serving
Yogurt (Greek) 68 23g/cup
Rice 59 2.7g/100 g serving
Oatmeal 55 2.4 g/100 g serving
Bread 54 9 g/100 g serving

Adapted from: http://www.fitstep.com/2/2-how-to-build-muscle/eating-for-muscle-growth/protein-quality-chart.htm

I know some people who take protein powder; should I?

This is highly dependent on the person. Basically, if you can achieve your daily recommended protein amount as specified above, then no, taking protein powder will not be of great benefit to you. However, if you find it difficult to get the daily recommended amount, then supplementation with a quality protein powder is highly recommended as they are very easy to utilize, simply add water and away you go. One that you could use would be something like Hemp Protein Powder – Hemp PrO. This is perfect for people like physicians or other health care professionals who may not have time built into their daily schedule for eating breaks.

If you are wondering what to look for in a protein powder ideally look for one that is a “Whey Protein Isolate”. These are the purest form of protein powders. A good suggestion is “Kaizen Whey Isolate” found at Costco. It is the cheapest isolate protein you will find and sells for $49.99/2 kg container. For a little cheaper option, check out “LeanFit Whey Concentrate”, also at Costco. As a whey concentrate, it is a little less pure then an isolate but still of high quality. This one sells for $39.99/2 kg container.

Hopefully this blog post has more than answered the questions you may have had about protein. However, if you are still unsure of some aspects written about here or perhaps something that wasn’t covered, please feel free to ask Jon or myself. We are always happy to answer the burning questions from those in pursuit of greater gainz!

photo credit: marcoverch Grünes Eiweißpulver via photopin (license)

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Courtney Sharpe

Nutritional Coaching by Julia Howard

For the past two months I have worked with the JKC team and have never felt better! In addition to a personal fitness plan, JKC’s holistic nutritionist, Julia, worked with me and around my busy schedule to educate me on healthier food options and meal planning. I maintain a daily food log which Julia reviews and provides feedback on and we also have weekly chats to discuss my nutritional goals and potential improvement areas. Julia also helped me to identify and work around dietary constraints which have caused digestion issues for years!

Julia and the rest of the JKC family have helped me get my confidence back! I love starting my days with a good sweat and a healthy breakfast. I understand what foods make me feel my best and my body is well on its way to becoming more lean, fit and happy! I would totally recommend Julia and the entire JKC team!

lisa jumping onto a box

JKC was recommended to me by a fellow runner. I was experiencing injuries, and feeling weak and fragile. When I started with JKC, Jon asked me about my goals and my focus. I wanted to concentrate specifically on running, and preventing injury. Jon developed a program for me that has enabled me to focus on my form and strength and has been flexible enough to enable me to train for many different races. I have been training with JKC for six years, and during that time I have enjoyed Jon and Thomas’s expertise in a very warm and supportive atmosphere.

Tara Rector-Whelan

Personal Strength Training by Thomas King

I started at JKC after a good friend recommended it to me. She had been coming for about a year and I was envious of her great results. I felt sluggish after failing to motivate myself with various home workout routines. I love the fun and relaxed atmosphere at JKC. It’s such a comfortable gym space and I enjoy knowing so many of the people I work out with. Jon and Thomas make an effort to introduce everyone to each other and with all the joking around,  it starts to feel like a family. Not to mention the awesome results. I’ve always liked to run on a treadmill but I’ve never had the drive to lift weights on my own. Going to JKC makes me accountable which was what I really needed. I feel so much stronger and healthier than I did 4 years ago when I started.

I joined JKC because I wanted to better care for my physical health, but didn’t really know how, or where, to begin.  Seeking help from a trainer seemed like a wise choice, and I had heard great things about the staff at JKC. Anyone who knows me knows that I hate exercising.  So, I’ve only ever tried sticking with a gym routine twice in my life.  Each experience consisted of me wandering around, not knowing what to do, and settling for an elliptical machine or something else that seemed comfortable and non-threatening.  Each session was the same, and I felt like I was wasting my time.

Each session at JKC, however, is specifically crafted for me.  I don’t have to think about what to do, because I’m told what to do.  I don’t have to worry about how to do things properly, because I’m shown (sometimes multiple times!) how to accomplish each task.  I don’t have to be concerned about slipping into a comfortable routine, because Jon and Thomas won’t let that happen.

The people and the training set JKC apart from other gyms or programs I’ve tried in the past. Truly Jon and Thomas meet you where are and help you get to where you want to be. There are no expectations and never any judgement. You can go there having the worst day and you always leave feeling better. Truly JKC has given me a level of strength and confidence I would not have had otherwise ❤️.

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