The most important time to eat high glycemic carbs is right after an intense workout. It is critical to get those hi-glycemic carbohydrates and a protein replacement shake into your muscle cells quickly after your intense workout to begin the recovery process. The amount of nutrition you get with the first 10 minutes of your recovery determines 90% of your recovery rate.
Following a hard workout, your body is severely depleted of glycogen and glucose. Basically your working muscles use glucose (usable energy) and glycogen (stored energy) to help you perform the workout. So fast acting carbohydrates like a banana or any type of glucose will quickly restock muscle glycogen used during the workout and the amino acids from your protein shake, like a whey-isolate powder, will boost muscle growth. Your cells are wide open and your insulin levels are all spiked up to help drive these nutrients into your muscle cells.
Why it's important:
The faster you repair muscles and begin the recovery process, the bigger the muscle grows and more fat you burn. Muscle burns fat so the more muscle you build the higher your resting metabolic rate becomes.
If you don't:
The hormone cortisol eats muscle tissue for protein and converts it into glucose to help replenish that glucose (usable energy) that you have used for the workout. Less muscle means a slower resting metabolic rate and more fat gain.