I have just read through the original post and the comments after, I thought id put my spin on it all. I have used many different protein brands and flavours, including Phd, Lonsdale, Reflex, My protein, USN, Sci-Mx, Met-rx,Eas, CNP and loads more. But my favourite tasting and value for money is Dymatize Elite Whey, I am not lying when I say this is the tastiest protein powder I have ever had. The Chocolate Fudge is easily the tastiest by far, although the rich chocolate is still nice. Dymatize elite whey, is also the best in my opinion as it has 48g protein in two scoops and only 5 g of carbs , which is great ! Some whey protein have a lot of carbs in them, which usually means that it is loaded in sugar (Not good).
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I have used whey protein in my diet for both in the off-season (bulking) and on-season (cutting/dieting). I have used mass gainers but I like creating my own mass protein shakes, for example 2 scoops whey, banana, peanut butter and egg whites. It’s a quick easy shake full of clean calories that will help as one of your meals when bulking up, its also a nice break from chicken and sweet potatoes.
I saw a comment about having a shake before you go to bed, this is ESSENTIAL, your body and muscles grow when you are asleep so you must help fuel this by ensuring it has protein (the building blocks for protein) to use while you sleep. This is why you have a shake before you go to bed, if you do not it would be like going on a cross country drive with the petrol light on. Now you can have a casein protein powder at night which is the best, as casein powder is slow released so your body can tap into it as you sleep and never go hungry. I have also used whey protein with milk not water, when I go to bed, when you use milk instead of water it slows the digestion so it again can be tapped into as you sleep. The obvious downfall to this is there are a lot of calories in milk compared to water. Another tip is if you wake up in the night for any reason, have a scoop of whey protein. If you are eating correctly and having a meal every 2-3 hours, 7-8 hours to go without any food is a long time, so having another mid-night shake is a great help to recover and build your muscles.
Now they key times to take protein are first thing in the morning, after you have been sleeping 7-9 hours (which is what you should be getting if you are training hard) you wake up in a catabolic state, this means muscle break down opposed to anabolic which means muscle building. So you need protein asap in the morning to get you into a anabolic state. Also pre and post workout are key times for protein, especially your whey protein shake after your workout, this is key and should never be missed. Once that last rep is completed then your whey shake should be in your hand ! Last thing at night is again key. Now you should be having protein with every meal that you have throughout the day, but these are the key times, but every meal is important.
On a persona note, I have used unflavoured whey protein and will never again, I could not get it down me; I ended up using milkshake powder and hot chocolate powder to mix it with. This made it drinkable but I would never order it again. I also use BCAAs and swear by them, I have used them in my diets for bodybuilding competitions and this year they gave me great results.