Pre-workout foods can fuel your body through a grueling workout so you don’t hit a wall mid-session. You have to time the snack or meal properly to ensure it doesn’t upset your stomach. It takes a combination of protein and carbs to fuel your body through the session. The carbs replenish the glycogen stores and keep you fueled throughout the workout. It can improve your performance. The protein helps jumpstart your recovery by providing the necessary amino acids.
The snack should be between 100 to 200 calories unless you eat a full meal 2 to 3 hours earlier.
If you have a meal or snack, it should contain 60% carbohydrates. Snacks can be anything from apple slices with a spoon of peanut butter to a cup of Greek yogurt with fresh or frozen fruit. A slice of whole wheat bread spread with peanut butter and topped with some bananas or fruit puree is another good option. You can slice a pitted date and put nut butter in it. A broiled chicken breast, salad, vegetables, and fresh fruit can be a good pre-workout meal. Avoid any heavy gravies and excess butter. Too much fat can make you feel sick.
The quick fuel provided by the carbs is the key.
The protein starts the recovery process early, but the carbs are why you need a pre-workout snack. Make it healthy carbs. Simple carbs like sugar or sugary treats can leave you feeling shaky. Fruit is different. It contains fiber that slows the absorption of sugar and keeps your blood sugar level. On hot days, freeze banana slices, blend them, and top them with nuts for an ice cream-like treat that feels almost decadent.
Smoothies are a great option.
You can make a smoothie at home and drink it right before you leave for the gym. Include nuts, protein powder, or milk products like yogurt for the protein. The fruits and vegetables in smoothies provide the natural sugar to provide the necessary energy. You’ll also get health benefits from the phytonutrients in the fruits and vegetables. A hard-boiled egg with avocado toast. The avocado spread can be made from mashed avocados, some lemon juice, salt, and pepper, or other ingredients such as garlic.
- Veggies and dip can be a good pre-workout snack. Make hummus from chickpeas as the dip or use yogurt as the base. You can even make cucumber slices topped with halved cherry tomatoes, chopped parsley, or olives.
- Overnight oats or a cup of oatmeal make a good pre-workout snack. You can sweeten it with sweet berries as the carb. Since the oats are high in fiber, it slows glucose absorption. Adding a little honey for sweetness won’t give you the shakes. Just don’t add too much.
- Don’t forget to hydrate when you eat your pre-workout snack. Staying hydrated during your workout is as important as the snack itself.
- Chicken breast on whole wheat toast is another good pre-workout snack. A small omelet with some broccoli, red pepper, and cheese can also boost your energy in the gym.
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