Your pre-workout meal is so essential because it is your body's primary source of energy for your workout, and it is what will keep you going, whether you're running, lifting, cycling, playing sports, etc. For optimal performance, the two things that your body needs are proteins and carbohydrates. The timing of this meal can be dependent on your preferences and the size of your meal, but a good rule of thumb is to try to eat 30-90 minutes before your workout. Here are some awesome pre-workout snack ideas:
- Apple or banana with nut butter
- Hardboiled eggs on whole wheat toast
- Greek yogurt with fresh berries
- Oatmeal and eggs
- Protein shake
Your post-workout meal is also something not to be looked over because this is when you need to refuel and replenish your body. If you skip this meal, your body will not be able to rebuild all the muscle fibers that were broken down during your workout, and you'll find yourself much more sore. Since you used carbohydrates and protein for energy during your workout, these are obviously the two foods that your body needs to refuel with. You want to consume this meal as soon as you can after you're done workout out, ideally within 30 minutes of finishing. Check out these great post-workout snack ideas:
- Handful of nuts, dried fruit, and seeds
- Low-fat chocolate milk
- Veggie omelet
- Protein pancakes
- Tuna salad on whole grain crackers
Something to keep in mind when choosing your pre/post workout foods is to make sure you are eating the right types of carbs and proteins. By this I mean, opt for whole grains and lean proteins. When it comes to starchy carbs, always go for brown rice over white rice, sweet potato over a regular white potato, and whole grain toast over white bread. As far as proteins, the leaner the protein the better. Skinless chicken breast, egg whites, fish, and lean ground turkey are always excellent options.
What are your favorite pre and post workout foods?