Nice To Meet You: Part 1

Driving home today, I decided to take a familiar route. This is a picture of the old Muscle & Fitness Magazine Headquarters. With it's palatial interior and athletes carved out of the walls along the rooftop facade, this building holds special memories for us. First of all, it's the reason my wife and I moved to Los Angeles when I took over the magazine's Fitness Director position in 2005; or so we thought it was the reason.

Days into my tenure, I happened to notice there was just something about one of my co-workers, far beyond his unbelievable writing skills and sense of humor. I knew he was smart -- smarter than me for sure. But something more. I remember the conversation. "You're a Christian," I said. And indeed he was. The weeks, months, and years serving readers together was an experience I'll cherish for a lifetime.

One late evening as we were both writing and editing fitness and nutrition content for our readers, I approached him and said, "Hey man, you got a second? I have an idea," And as he left my office, I think the last thing I said to him was, "I think I want to call it 'PrayFit.'" And the blessing of a best-selling book and DVD, a thriving website and an amazing future are byproducts of what we now know is the reason we moved to L.A. -- to meet Eric. And I'm glad you have, too.

--Jimmy Peña

P.S. As we continue to serve, I know I speak for Eric when I say how thankful we are for the book's co-authors, Dr. Jim Stoppani and Jimmy Page, as well as our contributing nutritionist Dana White and our online contributing writers (and selfless crusaders) Allison EarnstCatrina Vargas-Cormell, and Emily Ann Miller MPH, RD. And mostly, we want to thank you, the faithful reader. Nice to meet you.

>> ABOUT US: Click here to learn more about the genesis of PrayFit. >> TEAM PRAYFIT: Get to know the faces (and stories) behind the daily entries here.

THE "OTHER" PROTEIN Why you should have casein in your cabinet in addition to whey

So much is made over the post-workout whey protein shake and its impact on muscle recovery. But there are other times of the day when protein consumption can payoff in a big way. New research published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise found that a casein shake consumed 30 minutes before bed immediately elevated (then sustained) circulating amino acid levels, increased whole-body protein synthesis and improved net protein balance. In other words, this “second tier” protein kept up muscle repair all night long. Since it clumps in the stomach, casein is absorbed by the digestive system at a much slower rate than whey, providing a steady trickle of muscle building blocks while you sleep.

About half hour before you snooze, try drinking 20-40 grams of casein mixed in water. Since it is thicker than whey, figure on adding a bit more water to achieve your desired consistency.