When we start doing things ourselves, only then can we actually start to appreciate the effort that is put into any sort of work. With that in mind, preparing everything for yourself when going to workout can take time, but it is the best way to get your mind into the right place for working out.
A great part of working out is eating the right food. Having the right food, the healthy kind, for your workouts, can take some time to choose, and then prepare. Here is a guide on how to prepare the right food for your workouts.
Pre-Workout – Carbs and Energy
When you need to go and work out, you will most likely not eat food immediately prior to working out. That will probably cause nausea, as your body will be struggling to send blood both to your muscles and stomach.
One should eat at least two hours prior to a workout. Generally, when we are working out, we are using our glycogen stores which can get depleted. Depleted stores will lead to a terrible feeling of tiredness and weakness. Carb loading can help us with that.
The type of carbs we should prepare are pastas, rice, any vegetables, actually, nuts, seeds and the like. Prepare a meal, mostly of vegetables and you will have a great pre-workout meal.
Post-Workout – Some Proteins and Electrolytes
After a workout, a good recovery meal is necessary. Some people assume that all you need after a hard workout are proteins. Proteins are necessary but you should not fret about taking them immediately after a workout. Electrolytes are more important than proteins in this regard.
Electrolytes are necessary for the body to function normally and they get depleted or rather, reduced after a workout. Dairy, bananas or coconut water are all good sources of electrolytes. Adding proteins from either meat sources such as poultry or vegetables such as peas is recommended. The post workout meal should be geared towards recovery rather than muscle growth.
The Protein Meal – A Nighttime Meal
Proteins are best taken at nighttime, prior to bedtime. Proteins are mostly used when we sleep to repair the tissue damage caused by workout. With that in mind, anything containing proteins should be eaten for dinner. Start with poultry or lentils, beans and quinoa, and you should have a good basis. A dose of healthy fat, such as that from fish, is also good to keep the body in top shape.
You can add a protein shake in the evening if you feel like you did not add enough protein during the day or during dinner. Standard whey or casein proteins work well and plant-based options (bean protein or rice protein) for the vegans.
Preparing your workout meals is not rocket science, but one should pay attention to the macronutrients, carbs, proteins and fat. Consider your pre and post workout meals, as well as dinner. Breakfast should contain a healthy dose of carbs and proteins alike, to replenish the supplies used while sleeping.