Before working out, you usually prepare yourself for it. You prepare your equipment or devices like a smartwatch to monitor the calories you burn, an iPad so you can get yourself motivated while doing a strenuous exercise, and the like.
You also prepare your gears like a workout bag, workout clothes, arm or knee sleeves, and a water bottle. You know that getting your equipment and gears ready can make your workout easier. These materials can help you feel comfortable and prevent possible injuries while working out.
However, do you also consider preparing your diet before working out? You might think that considering what you eat before the training is not important at all. You might have this connotation in your head saying that you will end up burning everything that you eat during a workout anyway, but that is not true.
Providing your body with proper nutrition can help it perform better during the training. It can also help your body recover at a faster rate after working out because it maximizes your performance and minimizes the possible muscle damage.
If you do not mind the food you eat for pre-training, you might end up eating the wrong kinds of food which can put a lot of pressure on your stomach. The gastrointestinal blood flow decreases when you are on physical activity.
The function speed of your gastrointestinal organs becomes slower while working out. For this reason, eating the wrong kinds of food may cause abdominal pain or diarrhea.
What Should You Not to Eat Before Working Out
Since the functioning of the gastrointestinal system slows down while training, you should avoid the types of food that are hard to digest. Here are some of them:
It includes soft drinks, desserts, white bread, etc. These types of carbs do not have fibers which the body needs. Refined carbohydrates do provide a quick supply of energy. However, they are not as nutritious as the foods with natural carbs, and they can do more harm than good.
Nutrients That You Should Have Before Workout
To learn which type of food is good before a workout, you should learn the nutrients that your body needs when you train.
Your muscles use the glucose that they can get from the carbs as fuel. It is also your cell’s source of energy. Although fats are a good source of energy too, your body uses carbs more rapidly.
Also, other body parts, such as the brain, only use carbohydrates as fuel.
Fats are another source of energy. If you are into a low to moderate intensity workout and you have to stay active for a longer period, you need to have fats in your diet before working out. Carbs are for intense training that usually lasts for a short period.
This nutrient helps in preventing muscle damage. As you exercise, you use your muscles a lot making them prone to injuries.
Proteins help in supplying amino acids to the blood. Also, it is the nutrient that you need if you want to build your muscles.
Examples of Pre-workout Foods
Challenging exercises require the proper amount of nutrition. Here are the examples of food that you can eat before a spinning class.
Granola or Trail mix
Trail mix is easy to stash in your gym bag. You can bake your own by adding dried fruits, oats, nuts, and maple syrup. It is a good source of carbohydrates.
Chocolate chia seed pudding
Chia seeds are a good source of protein, antioxidants, and energy. Add them to milk or almond milk and let them swell. Add cacao powder afterward.
One of the advantages of a protein smoothie is it is ready especially if you are on the go. Make a smoothie by mixing a protein powder to your choice of greens and fruits. Banana is an excellent choice to include because of its potassium content.
Even though almonds are readily available for purchase, you have to be mindful of the portions. They are a good source of healthy fats and proteins.
Apple and nut butter
Apples are a good source of sugar which is essential for the body for its energy source. The nuts are good sources of proteins.
Eggs are popular for people who want to build up their muscles because of their richness in protein. Aside from protein, eggs are a good source of potassium.
Overnight oats are a good source of protein. It is easy to make your own because you can mix rolled oats with milk, fruits, honey, or natural sweetener. Leave it in a container overnight, and it will be ready in the morning.
Whole grain toast
If you need a light breakfast, a whole grain toast is your best choice for a carb. Partner it with avocado and nuts for additional nutrients and healthy fats.
Good source of carbohydrates, iron, and proteins. Iron is essential to ensure the oxygen supply throughout the body.
How to Eat Your Meals?
- If you can consume a heavy meal and low-calorie drink which includes water, eat two to three hours earlier before training. As much as possible, prepare foods with a mixture of proteins, veggies, and fats.
- If you only have 30 minutes to one hour before working out, eat a light meal for easy digestion.
- If you have to grab some snacks in between the workout, let go of the carbs.
- Keep yourself hydrated. Sports drinks are helpful especially when you have to train in a hot environment.
- Post-workout diet is as important as the pre-exercise diet. Meanwhile, if you are not hungry after working out, go for liquid nutrition like the protein smoothie or shake.
As you prepare your equipment and gears before training, you should also consider preparing your body for this physical activity. Your body needs the fuel and strength to carry out your fitness goals.
These fuel and strength are the nutrients that come from the food you eat before working out, so be sure to know about their nutritional value first.
I am a health enthusiast, and a DIY Home Improvement in training. I share my tips on maintaining healthy lifestyle and home projects at Equipment Area.