We get asked all the time, “What is the best thing to eat before I come in to the gym?” Most people don’t know what to do, so they just end up skipping a meal and then feel horrible by the time their workout is over. Just like your car, if your fuel tank in running low or on empty your performance will suffer at the gym and you will end up stuck on the side of the road in a ditch and completely out of gas!
Here are a few quick and easy ideas you can start to add into your pre-workout nutrition right away to see some great changes in how you feel in the gym before, during and after your workout. Keep it simple, this is not rocket science! Your body needs a good source of an easily digestible carbohydrate in order to fuel your muscles with glycogen (the stored carbohydrate in the muscle). It also isn’t a bad thing to have a little bit of protein pre-workout since you will be breaking down muscle during your workout. A little bit of fat is ok too, depending on the duration of your exercise.
Make sure to fuel correctly one hour to 30 minutes before your workout. If you don’t, you will fight low blood sugar leading to fatigue, light headedness and a lack luster training session.
What works best depends on the individual, so experiment with different foods, quantities and timing. A few great pre-workout meals would include :
- A Banana with 2 tablespoons almond butter or ½ cup of greek yogurt
- Oatmeal – about 1 cup with a handful of berries
- A slice of wholegrain bread – and a hard boiled egg
- A fruit and whey protein smoothie – easily digested and source of good carbohydrates and protein
Try one of these combinations before your next workout, and I guarantee you will feel better during your workout and will perform better!
Next time we will make sure to cover post-workout nutrition and how it differs from pre-workout nutrition. Stay tuned!