For some, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. But for others who manage to squeeze some gym time into their everyday routine, pre- and post-workout foods can be just as important. Bob Seebohar, sport dietitian, and exercise physiologist, suggests these yummy snacks that offer the right balance of carbohydrates, fats, and protein to satisfy hunger, fuel workouts, and aid with recovery. While everyone’s nutritional requirements and preferences are different depending on their goals and activities, you actually don’t need to eat much to work out for 60 minutes or less, says Seebohar, so keep these in mind for your longer sweat sessions. Read on for what to eat before a workout, plus the snacks to grab after.
The body builds muscle and recovers 24 hours a day, not just at the gym. Smartly timed snacks can give the body the fuel it needs to build muscle, burn fat, and recover as best it can. If you prefer to eat before exercising, or if your workout will last longer than an hour, Seebohar suggests grabbing a snack about 45 to 60 minutes in advance and keeping it small (think a palmful of carbs, a half palmful of protein, and a quarter palmful of fat). Find what works for you by trying one of these 25 options.
1. Perfect Yogurt Parfait
A parfait sounds fancy, but it’ll only take you three minutes to throw together this combo of 2 percent or full-fat yogurt, granola, and berries. Pro tip: You can make this in a disposable cup and eat it with a plastic spoon on the way to your morning workout.
2. Whole Orange Smoothie
Swap out sugar-packed juice for the real deal in this whole-orange smoothie.
3. Almond Coconut Mocha Smoothie
We love smoothies, but first—coffee. This recipe combines both. It’s perfect for an early-morning workout since the hit of caffeine will perk you up before you hit the gym.
4. High-Protein Oatmeal
Oats are a classic morning staple, but if you don’t want to clean up a pot before rushing to the gym in the morning, try this one as an afternoon snack. The recipe serves two, but we suggest dividing it into three portions and refrigerating the remaining two for smaller snack-size servings.
5. Blueberry Banana Protein Smoothie
It doesn’t get much easier than blueberries, bananas, yogurt, almond milk, and ice. Just be sure to swap out the suggested nonfat yogurt for a partial- or full-fat version— it’ll give you more fuel to crush your workout.
6. Banana Bread Greek Yogurt Parfait
This banana bread-inspired parfait is not nearly as complicated as baking up a sweet treat. You can pre-make a few and then pop them in the fridge for a grab-and-go snack on busy days.
7. Apple Peanut Butter Energy Bites
The classic apple-and-peanut-butter combo gets an upgrade from raisins and chia seeds. If you’re in a rush, skip the extras and just grab an apple with PB. Try stashing some to-go packs of peanut butter or almond butter in your gym bag so you can chow down on your way to indoor cycling class.
8. Mocha Protein Shake
Protein shakes can taste chalky boring, but when there are coffee and chocolate involved, we’re big fans. Some would suggest adding an extra tablespoon of sugar, but we’d suggest skipping it for an even healthier (and easier!) recipe.
9. Fresh Strawberry Parfait With Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese gives this parfait a light and creamy texture and adds a little extra fat, which will keep you feeling satisfied longer.
10. 5-Minute Protein Peanut Butter Energy Balls
Make these DIY no-bake peanut butter balls ahead of time, and you’ll have some healthy treats ready to fuel a week’s worth of sweat sessions. Seem like too much effort? Grab a box of your favorite bars (we love CLIF Bar’s new nut butter-filled ones), cut in thirds, and then roll into balls for smaller bites.
Aren’t they super yummy you’d forget you’re minding your workout?
For a complete list of other yummy foods to eat before and after workout, just head to this link: https://greatist.com/fitness/50-awesome-pre-and-post-workout-snacks
Here’s another resource you can look into: http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/recipes/healthy-eating/nutrition/best-workout-foods/
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Excited to eat now before and after your workout?