A Guide to Pre-Workout Nutrition

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So, you’re super fit. You cut out the bad stuff, work out tirelessly and hit the gym hard. But if you want your body to stay functioning like a Bugatti Veyron, then you’ve got to feed your gut with high-octane fuel – so make sure you eat the right foods prior to your fitness session.

While you might think skipping the calories is a smart idea – don’t. This will only lead to low blood sugar which, in turn, causes fatigue and dizziness. Not eating a nutritious pre-exercise meal means your time spent in the gym might not work your body to it’s full potential. Eat properly, and you’ll exercise harder.

That doesn’t mean you should chow down on junk food – this will only leave you feeling nauseous & sluggish. It’s time to eat the right pre-workout nutrition to up your gains and maximise energy levels.

What is the Best Thing to Eat Before a Workout?

There are numerous healthy foods you can eat within an hour of your workout. Why not check out what we think are the most nutritious pre workout foods for your best sweat session yet.

Bananas

Our athletes dub bananas as “nature’s power bar”.  These fruits are packed with easy-to-digest carbs as well as potassium, which helps in sustaining nerve and muscle function. Our bodies don’t store potassium for that long, so consuming a medium banana before a fitness session can aid in keeping nutrient levels at an optimum level. If you hit the gym first thing in the morning, bananas are especially good. So be sure to eat a medium-size one with some Greek yogurt around 30 minutes before your workout. This will deliver all the carbs and protein your body needs before your session.

Sweet Potato and Brown Rice

If you’re wondering what the best carbs to eat before a workout are, then you can’t go wrong with sweet potato and brown rice. These complex carbohydrates should be eaten about two-three hours prior to a workout. Supplementing these foods with a decent source of protein means you’ll get more than enough slow-releasing energy to stoke you up during your exercise session. Skipping carbs is never a good idea, particularly if you’re physically active – and more so if you perform frequent endurance training exercises like running and cycling.

Omelettes

An excellent source of muscle-building protein and amino acids, omelettes made with whole eggs and egg whites should be eaten two-three hours before a fitness session to prevent muscle catabolism and encourage muscle growth. Fill your omelette with low glycaemic carbs like spinach and oats, as they’ll be converted to energy and used as fuel during your workout. Low glycaemic carbohydrates will stop your insulin from spiking which can cause an energy crash mid-workout.

Protein Shakes and Powders

If you’re looking to build muscle, drinking pre-workout powders and shakes before exercising is a good option. Muscles are made up mostly of protein, and drinking a protein shake before fitness helps provide your body with the protein it needs to become stronger and build muscle. Protein is also used to create enzymes and other hormones that your body needs to continue to build strength. Exercise sessions cause powerful contractions which result in small tears in the fibres of your muscles. Drinking a protein powder before exercise helps deliver many of the important nutrients your body needs for them to repair and helps the body heal faster. Find out more about what protein powder is by reading our What Is Protein Powder blog.

Oats

The real plus of oats is that they’re loaded with fibre, which means they slowly release carbs into your bloodstream. And don’t worry, they’re not so packed with fibre that they’ll cause gas. This steady stream preserves your energy levels, keeping them steady throughout your fitness session. What’s more, oats include B vitamins, which help convert carbohydrates into energy. Treat yourself to around 90 grams at least half an hour before you start working out. No oats in the cupboard? Munch on our high-protein, low GI carb PRO 2GO® OAT BAKE, which is packed with 15g of protein.

Wholegrain Bread

One of the best sources of carbohydrates is wholegrain bread. For a fuel boost and high-quality protein hit before your workout, eat one slice topped with peanut butter, jam or honey – or even sliced up hard-boiled eggs. Heading to the gym during your lunchbreak? Eat some bread around 45 minutes prior to your session. You could add a few slices of turkey for a good dose of protein.

Fruit and Yogurt

You get the best of both worlds with these two foods, as fruit is rich in carbohydrates while Greek yogurt is loaded with top-notch protein. Consuming fruit with Greek yogurt can also provide the body with a source of protein to help enhance your workout.

Fruit Smoothies

The best kinds of pre-workout foods are full of protein, good carbs and healthy fats. These liquid meal replacements help you stock up on energy, and stay fuller for longer. Try our Very Berry Super Shake; it contains super berries, spinach, chai seeds, walnuts and more – the perfect combination for a pre-workout smoothie you can drink before every workout! Consuming a fruit smoothie before you hit the gym is a great pre workout meal option that can deliver a good source of fast-acting glucose. Our Super Strawberry Protein Shake is also a delicious, nutritious choice, as it’s complete with banana, Greek yogurt, flaxseeds, not forgetting our WHEY PLUS HARDCORE™.

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