We investigated the effect of carbohydrate and protein hydrolysate ingestion on whole-body and muscle protein synthesis during a combined endurance and resistance exercise session and subsequent overnight recovery. Twenty healthy men were studied in the evening after consuming a standardized diet throughout the day. Subjects participated in a 2-h exercise session during which beverages containing both carbohydrate (0.15 g x kg(-1) x h(-1)) and a protein hydrolysate (0.15 g x kg(-1) x h(-1)) (C+P, n = 10) or water only (W, n = 10) were ingested. Participants consumed 2 additional beverages during early recovery and remained overnight at the hospital. Continuous i.v. infusions with L-[ring-(13)C(6)]-phenylalanine and L-[ring-(2)H(2)]-tyrosine were applied and blood and muscle samples were collected to assess whole-body and muscle protein synthesis rates. During exercise, whole-body and muscle protein synthesis rates increased by 29 and 48% with protein and carbohydrate coingestion (P < 0.05). Fractional synthetic rates during exercise were 0.083 +/- 0.011%/h in the C+P group and 0.056 +/- 0.003%/h in the W group, (P < 0.05). During subsequent overnight recovery, whole-body protein synthesis was 19% greater in the C+P group than in the W group (P < 0.05). However, mean muscle protein synthesis rates during 9 h of overnight recovery did not differ between groups and were 0.056 +/- 0.004%/h in the C+P group and 0.057 +/- 0.004%/h in the W group (P = 0.89). We conclude that, even in a fed state, protein and carbohydrate supplementation stimulates muscle protein synthesis during exercise. Ingestion of protein with carbohydrate during and immediately after exercise improves whole-body protein synthesis but does not further augment muscle protein synthesis rates during 9 h of subsequent overnight recovery.