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What to Eat Pre-Workout

What to Eat Pre-Workout

Knowing how to fuel your body with the right nutrients before a workout is very important for optimal performance.  Not eating before an intense workout can cause you to become dizzy, lightheaded or lethargic. In short, skipping food before a workout can lessen your performance and reduce muscle gains.

Food consists of three macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins and fats.  The body prefers to use glucose from carbohydrates as its first source of energy.  Fat is used for fuel for longer duration workouts, after glucose and glycogen stores have been used.  Protein is utilized for muscle synthesis and performance.

Ideally, a full meal consisting of all three macronutrients would be consumed 2-3 hours prior to working out.  This cannot always be achieved.  The closer you eat to your work out, the simpler the meal should be in order to decrease stomach upset and digestive issues.  About one hour before workout out a small snack consisting mainly of carbs with some protein would be best.  

Examples of Pre workout Meals 2-3 hours Before Exercise

(These include protein, carbohydrates and fat)

cooked meat with cooked rice
  • Lean protein like chicken breast or ground turkey, brown rice and roasted vegetables
bread with sunny side-up egg served on white ceramic plate
  • Avocado toast with eggs and fruit
chicken salad served on white ceramic plate
  • Green leafy salad topped with chicken breast or tuna with black beans

Examples of Pre workout Snacks for Less than 2 hours Before Exercise

(These should be carb and protein focused)

clear glass with white liquid and red straw
  • Smoothie with fruit and protein of choice (whey, pea, soy)
white ice cream with strawberries on blue plastic container
  • Greek yogurt topped with fresh fruit
  • Keep it simple with a protein bar or a piece of fruit if you are in a hurry!

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