Hey all! I know we talk a lot about fitness in here, but I dont want to skimp on the nutrition side of working out too! It is SO important to be aware of both your nutrition and your exercising to have a strong and healthy body! A question that I get asked more times than I can count, is “What should I eat before and after my workouts?”. Well, here’s your answer! =)
I am definitely one of those people who doesn’t really like to eat in the mornings. Give me a cup of coffee and I’d be satisfied for a few hours before I want food, but I know how bad this is for your body so I try to get a little something down, especially if it’s prior to working out. It is SOO important to eat something in the mornings because it jump starts your metabolism and gets your body ready for the day. Want to know more about metabolism and other ways that you can boost it? Click HERE for my ebook about metabolism and ways that you can make it work for you! If it is so important to eat in the mornings, realize that it is just as important to eat before your workout. If you don’t have any fuel in your body, how can you expect your body to give you it’s all during your workout? You’re only cheating yourself if you’re not fueling properly. So what should you eat? There are lots of choices but I’m going to split it up based on when you’re working out.
If you work out in the morning and haven’t had breakfast yet, try to get down something with a good mix of complex carbs and protein. The ideal pre workout meal has 5 main characteristics. These include: low in fat, moderate in complex carbs and protein, low in fiber, contains fluids, and is made up of familiar and well tolerated foods by your body. I might have a few bites of oatmeal or a banana. Even a piece of whole wheat toast will work! My go to meal? A few spoonfuls of Greek Yogurt with some fresh blueberries mixed in. Try to avoid high calorie foods like bagels and cream cheese or doughnuts! =) You can go for some higher carb foods if you plan on having a longer or more intense workout. If you’re working out in the afternoon, I’m going to assume that you’ve already eaten a healthy breakfast a few hours ago. If your workout is in the afternoon, you may not be hungry yet, but make sure that you eat a light snack at minimum. Try to get some “power foods” like some apple slices with peanut butter, multi grain crackers with hummus, apples and walnuts in yogurt, or some oatmeal with berries.
Now that you know what foods to eat prior to working out, you might be wondering what to eat after. It is crucial to consume protein and a little bit of complex carbohydrates, as well as water, to help speed recovery, maximize exercise benefits, and help maintain lean muscle in order to aid weight loss. Some post workout choices? I love a good protein shake, especially if you add in some fruit (like a banana), some quinoa, a PB & J on whole wheat whole grain bread, or even just a handful of almonds if you’re not hungry.
Try adding in some of these nutrition changes to your diet and workouts and see how your body responds! Try to stick with it for at least a week or 2 and I guarantee that you’ll notice some changes in your workouts and your recovery! Good luck and keep me posted with your results!!