Protein Shakes for Less Than a Buck!

July 6, 2007

I am a huge fan of protein shakes! If you really want to lose weight quickly, substitute one of your meals each day with a protein shake. I have been supplementing my diet with shakes or meal replacement drinks for over 15 years. I’m not a breakfast person, so if I do eat anything I will slam down a protein shake.

Many people think protein shakes are expensive. They are wrong. Even the most expensive protein shakes will only set you back $2-$3 if you buy wisely. Since you are using these shakes in place of a meal…you should save money. If $2-$3 is too expensive, then I found a great video for you!

Now you have no excuses to eat junk food instead of eating healthy!

The nice things about these types of protein drinks is that they are easy to digest and don’t weigh you down. You will feel and look better if you chose a healthy meal like this over a fast food meal on a regular basis.

My favorite brand protein shake would have to be Myoplex by EAS. I buy boxes of 42 packets for $79.95 from Bodybuilding.com. That comes out to less than $2 per shake…and they are loaded with 42 grams of high quality protein. I like the strawberry flavor the best…it mixes really well in a blender with water and ice…great stuff!

Again…I recommend protein shakes instead of a meal…that way you will get lean quickly. If you use them in addition to a meal then you will get bulky…and that is something you should avoid at all costs!

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{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

Eric September 28, 2007 at 11:12 pm

HEY! i love scooby’s videos, we talked a few times via email and he gave me tips on bodybuilding and stuff.

i recommend his videos and his website for people who don’t have time or money (OR are scared of going to the gym because of those obnoxious a-hole muscle heads) to workout at home.

and since rusty emphasizes the incline movements, goto youtube and scooby shows how to do these incline movements at home!

p.s i make my shakes like scooby

admin September 29, 2007 at 1:02 am

Eric,

Very cool…I will use more of his videos in the future. I like featuring videos with helpful tips.

Rusty

Ron January 6, 2008 at 4:56 am

You know what’s great for making shakes? I love it. Magic Bullet (http://www.buythebullet.com). Seriously, that thing’s awesome. My girlfriend wanted one and I bought it for her birthday and ended up using it more than she did! Every morning before work I’d make a shake. Throw in some frozen fruit (it keeps longer and is supposed to be more fresh), vanilla yogurt, L-glutamine, and vanilla protein powder and I was good to go! Sometimes I’d throw milk and/or OJ in as well. Sometimes honey for energy too, as I’m all about wanting to always be energetic (though I’ve been told I’m very mellow – I’d rather not be!).

Rusty, what protein powder do you prefer? I was doing Optimum Gold Standard, but now I’m going to try Now protein. What’s your opinion on these? Obviously, I’m finding your site very valuable!

Oh, and L-Glutamine…Useful or unnecessary?

One last question…What are your thoughts/recommendations on these?
http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/fatloss.htm

admin January 6, 2008 at 3:14 pm

Ron,

I’ll have to look into the magic bullet. I saw the video on the site and it does look pretty cool.

My favorite protein powder by far is Strawberry Myoplex by EAS. It tastes great and I can buy a box of 42 packets that are pre-measured. This is one of the more expensive powders out there, but the ingredients are fantastic.

L-Glutamine is actually a decent supplement. A lot of people think in terms of replenishing you body after a workout. I like the idea of using it as a way to increase natural HGH levels.

Phil Campbell (a fitness guru who is 50 and looks 25) believes that taking 2 grams of L-Glutamine right before exercising will increase the amount of HGH that gets released during your workout. I haven’t tried this, but may give it a shot. I really respect Phil’s knowledge when it comes to HGH and fat loss.

As far as all of the fat loss supplements listed at bodybuilding.com, I’m not convinced they make a big difference for someone who has a lot of weight to lose. The biggest benefit would be for someone who wants to get extra lean for a vacation. I like the idea of only using supplements like these for an event.

Someone sent me a link to a supplement that “looked” more impressive than the ones listed over at bodybuilding.com. I need to see if I can find that.

Rusty

Angel January 7, 2008 at 10:45 pm

Rusty-
I bought a protien shake mix at GNC. I don’t recall the brand, but the goal was to replace high sugar slimfast shakes with high protien ones instead. I will be honest and say I ABSOLUTELY hated them, but drank them anyway. I would chug the shake in one gulp and chase with water, just to get it down so I wouldn’t have to taste it. This was a good 10 years ago, so please tell me they’ve made some advancements in the taste of protien shakes! I plan on trying the 2 shakes, one meal at dinner approach to drop weight quickly (initially) and I am worried I will run into the same problem.
Thanks much!
Angel

admin January 7, 2008 at 11:02 pm

Angel,

Get any of the strawberry flavored EAS Myoplex brand shakes. They are great. Those shakes back in the 80’s and early to mid-90’s tasted terrible!

Myoplex has a number of options for their strawberry shakes…it really is their best flavor.

Rusty

Mark January 16, 2008 at 11:15 pm

Just thought id ask….becasue of christmas i decided to leave starting my “2 meals a day routine” till now but was wanting to ask if id lose more body fat if i substituded my morning meal for a maximuscle cyclone protein shake and then ate pretty clean for my evening meal around 7.30pm! im running 5 miles 3 x a week, and 3 x on alternate days im doing free weights then a 10 mile bike ride (sunday as my rest day)…Im around 197lbs now and am hoping to look a little better for my holiday in early april …..i have good muscle underneath the fat so im not nearly all 197lbs of fat “if you get what i mean”….thanks 🙂

admin January 17, 2008 at 3:10 am

Mark,

That will work very well. That is probably an ideal plan to slim down and maintain all your current muscle. I have no doubt that if you do the workout described above that you will be extremely defined in 2-3 months…probably sooner.

Rusty

PS: Yeah…I am a big fan of shakes in the morning. They are absorbed quickly so your body gets the nutrients it needs without slowing you down.

Mark January 17, 2008 at 1:23 pm

Thanks rusty…starting from next monday and will keep a journal to track my progres…great site 🙂

Mark January 20, 2008 at 10:37 am

Hi rusty….my mom just bought me a smmothie maker and i was wondering if it would be a good way to get all the vitamins i need from fruits as im basicaly going to be having a protein shake in the morning, “possible smoothie” and then my evening meal with added protein after my exercises around 7.30pm! Would having a smoothie hinder my fat loss because my stomach wouldant be as empty as it would just having my morning protein…or am i mistaken ? Im starting the 2 meal a day routine with exercising on an empty stomach before my evening meal to promote fat loss! I wanna give myself the best start and would like to keep the muscle i have and focus primarily on losing the body fat so any advice is welcomed!…Thanks mark

admin January 20, 2008 at 10:58 am

Mark,

You will do great with that protein shake or smoothie in the morning. I have done really well in the past on the 2 shakes and and one meal at night method. I have also done the one shake and one meal method. It will work fine. Go for it.

Rusty

Mark January 27, 2008 at 9:24 pm

Hey rusty, im trying to stay lean whilst obviously trying to lose body fat, the question is should i have a protein shake post workout before my evening meal or would this just hinder my fat loss plan and therefore leave the post workout shake and just have a protein rich meal with carbs as usual ?

admin January 28, 2008 at 5:54 am

Mark,

Why don’t you drop the protein shake until you are really lean. Another alternative is to just drink it after a really tough resistance workout. I typically just drink these shakes when I’m super close to hitting my target body fat percentage…or after I’m completely lean.

Rusty

Mark February 5, 2008 at 9:36 am

Hey rusty, im a week into my “shake in the morning & dinner in the evening” cycle with weight training & cardio on alternate days, i feel good & strong but was wondering if id get better results if i add morning cardio before i have my shake / smoothie and just carry on with my routine as i have bin doing, also…a question which i need to ask is im carrying atleast 25lbs of extra weight due to body fat but would the cardio im doing take the energy from my muscle gains / muscle i already have or from the fat that i already have as ive heard conflicting evidence and seeing as your advice on here has done much better for me than anywere else ive tried, id rather have your opinion….thanks again, mark

admin February 5, 2008 at 10:50 am

Mark,

One of the big reasons I recommend focusing on strength while dropping weight is that strength training seems to give your body the proper amount of muscle for your frame. If you focus on getting “pumped up” it creates that artificial fluffy muscle look. You will gain muscle but it doesn’t look quite right.

Do cardio hard, but gain or maintain strength while dropping body fat and you will look great. If you do cardio in the morning before your shake, I probably wouldn’t workout later in the day. I’m kind of against working out in the morning and night. You have to have a life! If you do decide to do it, then limit yourself to just 3-4 weeks.

Rusty

Mark February 5, 2008 at 12:35 pm

Thanks for the advice rusty…i think ill do it on a weekly rotation and see how things go 🙂

Ron February 19, 2008 at 2:27 pm

So what’s the difference between something like Myoplex (or any other meal replacement drink) and plain old 100% whey (like the stuff I just bought, having confused it with Myoplex – http://www.drugstore.com/products/prod61262509)?

I have no idea what to get. Since I’m trying to burn off fat, should I get a light MRP? Low carb? Or would the original do fine? And what about all those fillers in Myoplex? You now see why my hair looks the way it does.

Anyway, I was thinking of trying Ultramet (original, lite, or low carb – Arghhh! I’m not sure!) after reading about Myoplex having stuff like corn syrup and other fillers in it…plus it seems to be easier on the wallet. But yes…many questions. Please help!

Trish May 19, 2008 at 8:36 am

Hi Rusty, this is the best site ever! I have been coming here for months reading your articles, and have always been amazed at how you are so generous of your time to answer all these questions! I have tried to find out for myself, but I am needing your assistance if you would be willing – I love the one meal a day thing, it feels right for me – and even though at first I go overboad I suspect that soon I will be more conservative in my meal choices. For breakfast, I would like to do protein shakes and I prefer either ready to drink or easy ones that can be mixed with water – not a huge milk fan. I saw that you recommended Myoplex and I wanted to confirm if that was myoplex lite? Also, I couldnt find them so I purchased the Body for life RTD shakes- and then got home and saw the 2nd ingredient was fructose. Would love to avoid HFCS if possible- Something I have purchased before is the Atkins RTD shakes and I dont mind them but I want to make sure what I am getting is a good quality, healthy meal substiitute. I was wondering what your opinion on the ATkins shakes were? ALLMAX Nutrition Isoflex Whey Protein Isolate in chocolate- that also is one I have tried in the past- but when mixed with water is too runny and like I said I prefer RTD – but if it is a good choice, perhaps I could mix with soy or something? And if I jog for an hour in the morning, would I drink shake prior to or after the run? THANK YOU SO MUCH!

Jordan May 20, 2008 at 3:12 am

Rusty,
My girlfriend recently started taking Muscle Milk Light in hopes to “burn fat”. My experience with Muscle Milks regular formula that its high in calories and fat. Do you think this would be ok to take as a meal supplement in the morning for a woman? Even though she does run and lift light weights a few times a week im afraid its going to make her fat! Anyhelp is appreciated THANKS!

admin May 20, 2008 at 3:22 am

Trish,

Muscle Milk RTD shakes are easy to find. Myoplex RTD shakes are great as well. You can order on Bodybuilding.com and save some money as well as get them quickly. I’m not a big fan of Atkins type supplements. I guess I haven’t met a high level athlete or trainer that gets really lean on Atkins…it seems to be more of a diet geared for people who are excessively overweight.

I would avoid soy…it is an inferior protein. Also…drink the shake after your morning jog, not before (this makes a HUGE difference in the results that you get from cardio).

Thanks for the compliments and thanks for being an avid reader!

Rusty

admin May 20, 2008 at 3:39 am

Jordan,

Have her get Muscle Milk “Carb Conscious”. It only has 220 calories and has 21 grams of protein. This is what I would recommend for most women.

Rusty

Trish May 20, 2008 at 8:06 pm

Thanks Rusty! I am in Canada…so often cant order online from many places, but we do have a GNC so I will head there in the morning. I figured the Atkins were not great, but when its a choice of those or slimfast in the RTD aisle of my grocery store, I assumed it was the lesser of two evils…Thanks again!

admin May 22, 2008 at 2:49 pm

Trish,

Go to GNC…they have Myoplex. I love Canada by the way. I go up to Vancouver 3-4 times per year.

Rusty

rome May 29, 2008 at 12:20 pm

Trish, if you have an Ambrosia Healthstore around your area, you can check there for decent protein shakes.
I’m not a fan of GNC because of the hiked up prices. I’ve also gotten decent protein powders from Costco before, but I’m not familiar with the selection they carry now.

Also, another idea: A few friends and I ordered plain unflavoured protein powder in bulk. We got 50lbs, and it cost us I believe just under 200. That equated to around 10-12.5 lbs of protein for 40-50 bucks apiece, which is quite cheap.
I’ll double check which site we ordered from, and get back to you. The powder came with 3 or 4 flavour containers; vanilla, chocolate, banada, stawberry. These were really concetrated flavours, and for about 2 large scoops of powder, you’d only need about 1/2 tspn to get a good amount of flavour.
Once the flavour ran out, I’ve started using instant pudding mix (the kind that takes only 5 minutes with just milk). I use 1 or 2 scoops of powder and add 2-3 teaspoons of the pudding mix. Yes it’s a TINY bit more sugar, but tastes great an is readily available everywhere.

Oh, btw, Toronto here

BurritoKid June 26, 2008 at 12:16 am

i was looking at the nutrition facts of the myoplex and i was pretty impressed to see such low sugar levels. i make my own shakes and i use frozen fruit and plain yogurt so this brings the sugar level high. im wondering if that’s no good for fat loss.

when you have low carb days, do you avoid all veggies and fruits as well?

admin June 29, 2008 at 3:12 am

BurritoKid,

Don’t worry about fruits and veggies, they are fine. I would avoid fruit juices however because they will skyrocket your blood sugar levels.

Myoplex is the best stuff I’ve found if money isn’t an issue.

Rusty

BurritoKid July 2, 2008 at 3:01 am

someone is selling “cytogainer” for cheap. now with a name like that taking it would be a faux pas to this website. but i was thinking about using it for meal replacement and instead of 4 scoops, maybe just 1 or 2. this would reduce the calories, etc.

do you know anything about this stuff? the ingredients list off so many things that i do not know. and that gets me nervous.

admin July 3, 2008 at 3:44 am

BurritoKid,

You mentioned you had Muscle Milk as well. You should stick with that as it is high quality stuff.

Rusty

maria northey February 25, 2009 at 7:13 am

I use diet shakes and find them very good as you can take them any where and keep your weight in balance .

pnw fitness April 2, 2009 at 4:28 am

I’ve cut way back on my shakes because when you start adding things like bananas the calories get higher than a decent meal.

That said, I still love the flavor of them and use them as a snack or reward. ON makes a whole bunch of awesome flavors! I think Caramel Toffee Fudge may be my favorite, but I have a few flavors yet to try.

JR May 22, 2009 at 8:17 pm

I love my shakes…2 cups skim milk, 1 banana and 1 scoop of chocolate whey protein…BAM!

hayden July 31, 2011 at 1:07 am

hello i and am wondering what type of myoplex i should buy for the shakes should i get the lite or the regular, Oh and what do you think about force factor thanks.

Destanie February 1, 2012 at 9:02 pm

Hey Rusty,

Im currently trying out your visual impact for women and am loving it. I love the hard cardio. It makes me sweat raindrops in minutes. I was jsut wondering what kind of protein shake/powder you would recommend while doing the visual impact??? and I would drink that after my workout or as a replacement of a meal correct? Any info would be a tremendous help. Thanks.

George April 21, 2012 at 12:11 pm

Hey Rusty,

Thanks you for awesome information! I was wondering if your morning shake has carbs in it as well or do you just go for a protein or Whey type supplement.

I am at that point where I probably have like 300g of fat to lose before I see my 6 pack for the first time in 17 years 🙂

I am thinking of giving a protein shake a go for the mornings where I don’t fast. Also is it cool to have this same shake after morning HIIT cardio in a fasted state maybe like 60 minutes after the work out?

Thanks!

Marcie Courville August 14, 2012 at 6:24 am

I am thinking of substituting dinner for a protein shake, I at 170lbs, 5’4″ around a size 10, I work out 5 days a week, eat pretty good during the day but dinner and weekends are my downfall, I do 30 minutes of cardio consisting of Stairclimber, Stairmill, EFX, and bike, some treadmill, then I move on to my lifting schedule for the other 30 minutes. I need a boost in losing here! I have just one hour a day to get it done..

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