Should You Take BCAAs After Exercise?

How Many BCAAs Do You Need post exercise to promote muscle repair and recovery? EndurElite Chief Endurance Officer has your answer so you don't get scammed.

7 Fast Facts About BCAAs:

  1. The Branched Chained Amino Acids (BCAAs) are leucine, iso-leucine, and valine.
  2. BCAAs are the main amino acids for stimulating muscle repair and recovery.
  3. BCAAs are only effective at promoting recovery when dosed properly.
  4. At minimum, your BCAA recovery drink or supplement should contain 2.5 grams of leucine and 1.25 grams each of iso-leucine and valine.
  5. Never buy a BCAA drink that has a proprietary blend on the don't know how much of each BCAA you are getting and more than likely are being scammed.
  6. You don't need to add BCAAs to a complete protein powder such as whey.
  7. A recovery drink that contains complete protein and carbs (not just BCAAs) is better for endurance athletes when it comes to recovery.

Full Video Transcription:

How many BCAAs do runners, cyclists, OCR, and other endurance athletes need after exercise?

Good morning, family of fast. Matt Mosman, the Chief Endurance Officer over at EndurElite. Today we're gonna talk a little bit about BCAAs or the branched-chain amino acids, leucine, isoleucine, and valine and more specifically how many BCAAs do you need post-exercise to promote recovery? And the answer is none.

If you're consuming at least 25 grams of a high-quality whey protein or similar or in the case of RecoverElite, 14 grams of whey hydrolysate plus a little bit added leucine, or if you're eating some kind of whole-food that has 20 to 25 grams of protein post-exercise. But hey, sometimes you don't want a nice warm protein powder shake or a chicken breast immediately post-exercise and a nice refreshing branched-chain amino acid drink, kind of, fits the bill.

Best Dose Of BCAAS

But there are some things you really have to watch out for in recovery based drinks that only contain branched-chain amino acids. And the two things you really want to look out for are the total amount of branched-chain amino acids found in the product and also making sure that these branched-chain amino acids aren't found in a proprietary blend where you don't know how much you're getting.

So, real short and sweet here. If you have a recovery drink that consists of branched-chain amino acids only and maybe some vitamins, you want to make sure at minimum you are getting 2.5 to 3 grams of leucine and then a minimum of 1.5 grams of isoleucine and valine as well for a total of about five to six grams of total branched-chain amino acids.

Now, why are these numbers important? Well, from previous videos, we know that it takes at least 2.5 to 3 grams of leucine to trigger muscle protein synthesis or the physiological process responsible for muscle repair and recovery. If you are not hitting that 2.5 gram leucine threshold, you are not gonna trigger muscle protein synthesis. It's kinda along the same lines, if you're only getting like 10 grams of a whey concentrate or whey isolate immediately post-exercise, there's not gonna be enough leucine to trigger muscle protein synthesis.

Don't Add BCAAs To Your Protein Powder

And this brings up another point, if you do consume like a whey concentrate or isolate immediately post-exercise and it has at least 20 to 25 grams of protein, you don't need to add any more BCAAs to that because that whey protein will have enough naturally occurring BCAAs and essential amino acids to trigger muscle protein synthesis.

So, let's just wrap this up short and sweet. If you're a runner, a cyclist, a triathlete, an OCR athlete who drinks a branched-chain amino acid recovery drink immediately post-exercise, look closely at the label. One, makes sure these BCAAs are not found in a proprietary blend, and two, make sure that this branched-chain amino acid recovery drink has at least 2.5 to 3 grams of leucine.

So, that is all I have for today on BCAAs, my endurance friends. If you have a buddy that chugs BCAA recovery drinks like they're going out of style, please share this video with them. If you want other videos like this on endurance training, nutrition, supplementation, and my other random musings, subscribe to the EndurElite YouTube channel or head on over to the EndurElite blog at Get social with us on Facebook and Instagram. And until next time, family of fast, stay fueled, stay focused, stay fast and stay informed.