Recent workout researchers show that proper and timing nutrition prior and after workout:
- Speed up muscle growth and recovery
- Optimize your health and physique
- Enhance fat loss
- Up-regulate metabolism
By eating the right food at the right time you will achieve these goals much faster.
Pre and post work out eating schedule
Whether you are an athlete or a newbie the best time to eat is 1-2 hours prior and 15 mins to 1 hour after the workout.
Your meal should consist of lean proteins, carbs, heart-healthy carbs, and water.
Pre workout protein and carbs intake
Studies have also shown that protein and carbs intake before work out has a greater impact on muscle building than eating them after the exercise. It also doubles your resting energy expenditure, i.e. the speed at which your calories are burnt while resting. Moreover, this nutrient combination helps reduce cholesterol levels in the blood.
Pre workout meals:
- Bananas- full of fast digesting carbs and rich in potassium. It plays an important role in building muscle mass and also helps brain function.
- Fruit and low or non-fat yogurt. Fruits contain good sugar i.e. sucrose and fructose while one cup of yogurt provides almost 50% o your pre work out protein needs.
- Oats are loaded with slow digesting carbs, protein, fat, and fibers. Thus it carries the greatest amount of various nutrients.
- Eggs and whole-wheat french toast.
These pre work out meals will provide your body with adequate energy, keep you from feeling hungry or even dizzy due to a low blood sugar.
Post workout protein and carbs intake
It is even more important to consume proper nutrients after the workout than prior to it since your body now needs glycogen replenishment and muscle proteins recovery. What you eat after the workout influences the protein synthesis which has a direct effect on the muscle growth. It’s highly recommended to stick to slow digesting food because it supplies your body with casein proteins i.e. building blocks for muscles formation and amino acids blood suppliers.
Post workout meals:
- Fat-free fillets, canned tuna, seafood
- Chicken or beef with vegetables
- Rice and potatoes
- Protein shake with milk and almonds
- Protein ice cream with light chocolate
- Casein protein powder (you should drink it 30 minutes before bed )
All these meals help replenish the energy and vital proteins, minerals and vitamins lost through exercise.
Foods to avoid
It’s useful to know which food you should never eat be it before or after working out. Never eat fatty foods since it’s hard to digest and takes more room in your stomach. Also, avoid food which is rich in proteins but bad for your stomach:
- Leafy greens such as spinach or broccoli. It will cause abdominal bloating and great discomfort.
- Some of the sports drinks since they contain too much sugar. Opt for tomato juice instead and consider investing in a vegetable juicer to increase your vitamin intake with more fruits.
- Raw seeds -sunflower, sesame or pumpkin seeds. They also cause stomach discomfort.
- Protein bars
Finally, overeating is the worst thing you can do. It’ll make you feel sick rather than fit before you drag yourself to the gym.