Every meal you consume is important as it indeed does it’s job to keep you running. But the most important meals of the day in which we tend to overestimate are the meals revolving around our workout. Knowing what to eat is crucial to maximize your efforts in the gym.
Why Pre-Workout Is Important
What you eat before your workout is crucial to maximizing your hard efforts in the gym. It will give you energy to perform more strenuous workouts and it will also allow you to push yourself at longer lengths. This optimizes your performance, consider the story I told you about here with the man who watched my crazy workouts and asked what pre-workout supplement I was taking.
There are two options for cardio pre-workout meals: No food and food.
No Food:Most people enjoy doing fasted cardio (no food consumption) before working out because it’s effective in burning fat. This was actually what I did at the beginning stage of losing 30 lbs. I would wake up, get ready and head straight to the gym for some cardio. This proved to be very effective in burning fat because your body is in a fasted state when you were sleeping all night. Instead of running to carbs and food for fuel, it runs directly to the bodyfat and utilizes that to give you energy.
Food: For cardio day pre-workouts I typically like to stick to something light like with scramble eggs and salsa on top or rice cake with cottage cheese. As you can see, these options are healthy carbs and proteins You want to keep it as a light snack because anything too heavy might just make you puke. It will also limit your body’s ability to burn more fat.
I consume my food 45 minutes before my workout session. This will the allow the food to settle before I go crazy on my HIIT’s
On days when lifting, you without a doubt want to make sure you eat. Lifting weights should never be performed without the consumption of food beforehand. On weight training days I go heavier on carbs and I eat slow ingesting complex carbs like to give me energy. I also add in some kind of protein as well, like non fat greek yogurt, egg whites or cottage cheese.
Why Post Workout Is Important
This is when your body has undertaken an anabolic stage, where it’s rebuilding. In this stage, you have completely just killed your workout, teared your muscles and now your body needs to be recovered and replenished. Eating the right post workout meal will allow your body to repair itself while also increasing muscle protein synthesis. This is the most important stage when it comes to building muscle mass.
Post workout for cardio days could be just a protein shake with a rice cake.
Post workout meal for weight training is typically around 25g of protein and 10 g of carbs for me. You need at least 1g of protein per pound to build muscle. Eating a higher amount of protein is important because at this point your muscle tissues are torn and you need the protein intake in order for it to be repaired .
For days when I am training super hard and I know I did a lot of muscle tearing action, I will have a protein shake immediately after my workout THEN consume my post-workout meal about an hour later.
There is no point in working your butt off in the gym if you are not feeding yourself correctly to complement your hard work. Eating the right kinds of foods around your workouts will prove to maximize your fitness goals and get you to where you want to be. So remember, pre-workout for energy, post-workout for recovery.