What’s the ideal pre-workout nutrition? Exercise is strongly linked to nutrition: eating the right foods before a workout helps your performance and decreases muscle damage. Health should never become a synonym of starvation and it is important to fuel up on food before you hit the gym! If you workout on an empty stomach, your body will breakdown muscle tissue into glucose, in order to provide the energy you need. This negatively impacts your metabolism, causing fatigue and vertigo.
Here are some useful guidelines for you to follow.
Timing is fundamental
When it comes to pre-workout nutrition, timing is everything.
As a general rule, the closer you get to a workout, the more simple your meal should be.
This is because digestion time is directly proportional to the amount of food you consume.
Two or three hours before a workout, you can eat a full meal (containing fat, protein and fiber) because your body will have the time to break down the food and convert it into energy.
If you want to eat an hour before your exercise, you should have small snacks: a bowl of cereal, some fruit, or a sandwich.
Take into consideration the intensity of your workout
The amount of effort you put into your workout will determine what you eat before.
As we all know, the higher the intensity, the more calories you will burn: you need to be ahead of the game and compensate with food.
However, pre-workout foods differ, whether you want to gain muscle or lose weight!
When you build muscle, your body burns glycogen instead of fatty acids: this means you should avoid eating foods containing fat, fueling up on carbs and proteins. If you want to lose weight, you do the contrary.
Keep in mind that this is just a general recommendation; so every person should pay attention to what works best for them.
Pre-workout nutrition tips:
Carbs are our main source of energy and they are perfect for high-intensity exercises.
Protein increases anabolic response, muscle growth and recovery.
Fat is the best option for long and moderate workouts.
Here are some foods you can eat before exercising:
Bananas are rich of digestible carbohydrates and potassium, which helps to maintain nerve and muscle function.
Oats are full of fiber and B vitamins and you can pair them with fruit.
You can make a sandwich with some meat (ham or turkey), or have eggs and avocado toast.
Chicken, Rice and vegetables
It’s a combination of protein and carbs, which provides a great source of energy.
Fruit and Yogurt
Fruit is high in carbohydrates and Greek yogurt is packed with high-quality protein.