Eating the right foods before, and after a workout is key for the boost of energy you’ll need to give it your all for optimum results in your body. Depending on the type of exercise you do, nutrient requirements vary. For example, a runner will require more in terms of pre and post workout nutrition vs. a gentle yoga practice. Also if you’re exercising with a weight loss goal in mind, “rewarding” your workout with a big ice cream sundae or cheeseburger is likely to unravel all your hard work! Get the most out of your next gym session by following a few tips to improve your performance.
Coconut Water is what I call nature’s Gatorade. It’s packed with essential electrolytes such as potassium, and magnesium to replenish what is lost through sweat. This refreshing drink is available everywhere nowadays, but it’s important to find a variety that’s 100% pure coconut water without added sugars, and preferably not from concentrate.
Before exercise, a light snack of fresh or dried fruit and nuts or juice provides a quick boost of energy and is easily digested. Pairings like apple and peanut butter are a good option for fiber and protein. The idea is to keep it light to avoid digestive upset, or have you feeling sluggish.
Depending on how vigorous your workout is, eating complex carbohydrates such as rolled oats, brown rice or quinoa is great for sustainable energy, It’s a good idea to wait at least an hour after eating to exercise, and avoid fatty meals as fat takes much longer to digest.
Protein helps muscles to recover, and rebuild. Ask your doctor how much protein you need based on your age, weight, and level of activity. Choose whole food sources such as fish, legumes, lean meats, or eggs. A quality protein powder can also be used, and there’s no need for those extreme muscle blends you see in the health food store.