When you take the time to work out, you want to get the maximum benefits from your efforts. In order to get the most from your exercise, you need to fuel your body properly. This means eating before, during, and after you are done.
Fuelling your body
Those who exercise frequently know the importance of snacking on something before you start your workout. However, your post-workout snack is even more important to your body. When you eat after you exercise, you feed the body to help repair muscles tissues and to replenish glycogen store, which become depleted from strenuous exercise.
Before you begin your routine, you want high-carbohydrate/low-fat snacks. These prevent the blood sugar from dipping too low, which causes dizziness and fatigue. It also gives the body an immediate energy boosts so you can work out as long as you need to without tiring too soon. The best pre-workout snacks are:
- Popcorn Avoid eating a full meal before working out. The body needs 2-4 hours to digest a meal.
Avoid foods high in fibre. Fibre takes a long time to digest and cause stomach distress and cramping during your workout.
The only thing you need during your workout is water. Drink as much as you need to keep you hydrated and to prevent fatigue. If your workout extends longer than an hour, you may want an energy drink to help refuel your body and prevent you from tiring out before you are done.
This is the most important time to eat. You have a window of 45 to 60 minutes, the Golden Hour, after you workout to replenish your body. That is the time when your muscles are most receptive to what you eat. The best choices for post-workout eating are complex carbohydrates and protein snacks. The best post-workout snacks are: - High Protein Shakes. A simple shake gives you the carbohydrates and protein you need to feed your body. A good choice is a banana and protein shake since the body quickly turns food into energy at this time. - Yogurt with berries. Low-fat yogurt gives your body the protein it needs and the berries provide carbohydrates for boost of energy. - Peanut butter crackers. Make some peanut butter crackers before heading off to the gym. Use whole-wheat crackers for the carbs and the peanut butter provides a perfect amount of protein. - Protein bars. High protein bars are perfect when you are not that hungry, but you need to feed your body to heal and re-energise it.