The best pre-workout and post-workout foods

The best pre-workout and post-workout foods

Anna Cortesi
Dietitian – Nutritionist

While we all know that exercise is beneficial to our body, only a few know what we should eat before and after our exercise.  Although each human body is different, there are some secrets that will help you perform better during your everyday training. At the same time, they will make your springboard towards a healthy diet that will give you energy and all the nutrients that your body longs for.

As you may have already known, poor dietary choices may have negative effects to our health. For example, if you have eaten too much or if you have chosen a very fatty meal before exercise, you will feel your stomach heavy and puffy. You will not be able to work out properly and the benefits of exercise will be extinguished. Respectively, if you have not eaten long before exercise, you will feel ready to collapse.

The same happens after exercise, since the body needs quality ingredients to properly construct our muscular system. Otherwise, you will always feel hungry and eat unhealthy choices that give you empty calories and no nutritional value.

What to Choose Before and After Exercise 

Our body needs the right fuel, both before and after exercise. Here are the nutrients you should never miss out on our meals and snacks:

  • Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates provide us with the energy we need so that we can meet the needs of our everyday life. Energy needs are multiplied during exercise. Therefore, it is necessary to intake adequate carbohydrates.
  •  Proteins: Proteins help rebuild and repair our muscular system. So, we should always have proteins within our post-workout meals.  Proteins also help us feel full for longer.
  •  Water: Adequate hydration is vital to our body. During exercise, sweating causes fluid loss and hydrating properly prevents dehydration of our body.Below, we are giving you a few examples of snacks suitable for before and after working out.

Pre-Workout – At least 1 hour before

  • Try a smoothie with 1 tbsp avocado and banana, combined with almond milk.
  • A cup of fruit salad with grated nuts will give you the energy you need without the bloating.
  • 2 whole grain crackers with 1 slice of low fat cheese and vegetable slices make also a great combination.
  • Bananas can easily make a tasty iced drink with any kind of plant based milk and 1 tbsp of whey protein powder.

    Post-Workout – Up to 2-3 hours after working out
  •  Oats can do miracles on your post-workout mood, especially when combined with milk or yoghurt, nuts and fruits or honey.
  • Greek yogurt can be accompanied with honey, cereals and grated nuts for a healthy and delicious snack.
  • A high protein mix of nuts, seeds and dried fruits is ideal to get the muscle energy you lost through exercise.
  • Finally, you can make a smoothie with fruits and vegetables and add grated linseed for more energy and lots of fatty acids.

Enjoy your meal!

Best of Health,