We all know that old saying, “You are what you eat,” which speaks volumes to the importance of giving your body the fuel it needs for optimum performance, especially if you’re getting your sweat on first thing in the morning or to blow off some steam after work.
We spoke to some of our experts about the best pre-workout foods to boost your energy and make sure you get the most out of your workout at any time of day. The good news? Smoothies were an all-round winner!
“You should aim to eat 60-90 minutes before you start working out and need some slowly digested carbs and a source of protein. For intense early morning sessions, just a couple of crackers and cheese or half a glass of milk. If you’re training in the late afternoon a Greek yoghurt, latte, banana and some nuts or a slice of toast with cheese and tomato are all good to eat.”
“I recommend a balanced meal that has a low GI carbohydrate component as well as a high protein component to fuel the body for optimal performance. This could include rolled oats/porridge, eggs, almonds, natural yogurt or avocado on wholegrain toast. Alternatively a pre-work out smoothie with the combination of banana, spinach, avocado, chia seeds, rolled oats and almond milk is a great alternative. Smoothies are also a great pre workout snack as they are quickly digested and nutrient dense.”
“When you work out, the body burns fuel from your pre-workout meal and then it breaks down glycogen stored in muscles, therefore you want to support the body giving it the best fuel pre-workout. Generally you want something that is digested quickly and easily and (so you don’t have any stomach discomfort while you train) and is going to give you a hit of energy. Best foods include: bananas (high in potassium), berries (high in antioxidants that reduce oxidative stress during exercise), carrots, a small coffee (moderate caffeine intake can support increased circulation meaning better blood flow to your muscles). Other great easy to digest pre-workout foods include corn thins with avocado/ricotta, wholegrain toast with peanut butter and banana, small natural or greek yogurt with fruit, porridge, apple wedges with almond butter and trail mix. ”