Foods to eat before and after your workout

Foods+to+eat+before+and+after+your+workout

Tayler Critchlow

When exercising, it is extremely important to eat properly to reduce injury and to have an overall more efficient workout. Here is your guide to foods to eat before and after you workout.
Pre-Workout
You are about to head out to the gym to work up a sweat and burn those calories. But before you go it is important to adequately supply your body with nutrients, but at the same time you don’t want to overload your digestive system right before you workout because then it will be an overload on your body and it will make for an unpleasant workout session (trust me I know).
So, what do you eat? Well, there are a few options. Now depending on the intensity and length of your workout, it depends on how much and what you need to eat. Some workouts will require a heavier carb intake, whereas others you should not eat a lot at all.
But for the average person here are some options to consider.

  • You could go simple with just a classic apple; add some peanut butter for some extra protein. Or go with a banana and peanut butter and put it on some toast.
  • A handful of dried or fresh fruits such as blueberries, bananas, oranges, pineapple, and/or apricots, supplies you with a good dose of natural sugars and carbohydrates. You could even mix in some yogurt or cottage cheese as well.
  • If you are down with it, try some hardboiled eggs for straight protein. If you can’t handle an egg by itself try putting it on some toast. This is better for people with heartier appetites, as well.
  • Nuts and oats are always a go to when discussing working out, especially almonds because they are full of protein and natural fats that are good for the body.
  • Energy bar, these are usually very convenient and come pre-packaged.
  • Gatorade and Powerade are always good to get your carbs and electrolytes in before an intense workout. They are also convenient and come in multiple of flavors.

 
Post-Workout
Now that you are done working out and have felt the burn, you need to re-nourish your body of any nutrients it may have used up while you were exercising. But, just like before your workout, you don’t want to eat an entirely huge meal afterwards either (at least not all the time). Most people usually only have time for a quick snack between working out and heading to the next activity anyway. So, there are a few options for replenishing your nutrients, and of course, if you find your pre-workout snack absolutely incredible just eat it twice.
Now, again, everything is dependent on the type of workout that was just completed, but here are some options.

  • Trail mix is an easy and fun thing to eat. Throw some nuts, dried fruits, and maybe some sweet treats in it and it supplies you with all your necessities.
  • If you like it, tuna on some crackers is great. Tuna is a high source of protein and the crackers would be for your carbs. Personally I like tuna on Ritz, because the saltiness of the Ritz intensifies the tuna.
  • Eggs and chicken are go-tos for catching up on your protein, while bagels and pancakes are good for resupplying your body with much needed carbs after a hard workout.
  • Protein bars, like with pre-workouts, are a good convenient way to refuel your body.
  • Chocolate milk is also very popular, supplying you with carbs and sugars.

 
Protein Shakes
Now, protein Shakes are what everyone thinks of and can be considered for pre- and post-workouts. You can throw a bunch of random things together, blend it and drink, so that way you can be sure you are getting everything you need and you can take it on the go.
There are different types of things to put in a protein shake but most of them all consist of the basics:

Renita Ravuth | Student Media
Renita Ravuth | Student Media

 
You need a base, this is usually a liquid of some sort such as skim milk, yogurt, soy milk, or almond milk. Almond and soymilk typically contain more protein, but have higher cholesterol.
Next up, you need a protein ingredient. Cottage cheese is extremely popular since it is so high in protein, eggs can be used but then you have to deal with the potential side effects of consuming a raw egg. Almond butter is another option that can be considered.
Third, you should select a fruit or multiple pieces of fruit, as a simple carb. The fruit is usually to add consistency to the shake, but the fruits selected will also add their individual nutritional benefits. Bananas are typically the most popular because of the consistency they add and the boost of potassium that they give that can ward off any potential cramps.
An optional addition is oats or powdered bran for added protein but it is not a requirement.
For post-workout shakes it is good to add a little honey, because it will help in the absorption of protein into the body, it will also make the shake a little sweeter.