Easily digestible fruit
Fruit is nature’s answer to a healthy sugar high. It also provides your body with carbohydrates to boost your energy levels.
Fresh fruit such as bananas and apples are loaded with Vitamin C, antioxidants, and fibre, making tucking into them a fantastic way to give you a natural boost of energy before your workout.
However, make sure that you chose easily digestible fruits as those that are hard to digest – such as those from the citrus family – could hinder your exercise by causing stomach cramps.
Greek yoghurt is a great pre-workout treat as it contains twice the protein of normal yoghurt and provides you with good carbs, which boost your energy when exercising.
The combination of protein and carbohydrates in yoghurt is also great for muscle growth. Add in a few of your favourite tasty berries for some extra nutrition and a natural energy boost.
Bran cereals are a winning choice when it comes to improving your physical performance. They are high in fibre, and the betaine chemical found in bran foods enhances your physical performance and boosts your metabolic rate.
Bran also helps with cell function and prevents dehydration during exercise. For a healthy, pre-exercise breakfast, fuel your body with bran flakes topped with fruit.
It’s a combination that delivers half your recommended daily serving of fruit and whole grain before you’ve even had chance to change out of your pyjamas!
For up to one hour after exercise your body will be craving the nutrients it has lost, so this is the most important time to replenish and re-build your depleted muscles.
Eating protein such as chicken, eggs or fish will provide your muscles with amino acids that help them to grow back stronger and bigger. That’s why it is essential that you’re consuming protein-rich foods to maximise the effects of your workout.
Liquid meals such as smoothies and nutrient-rich shakes allow you to get all the essential post-exercise nutrients in just a few gulps.
They are the perfect way to provide your body with essential nutrients in the one hour post-exercise recovery period.
Most people find the thought of a big meal daunting after exercise, so topping up on essential muscle-repairing nutrients in liquid form is a quick and easy way for your body to access useful nutrients.
And, on top of that, the faster the nutrients enter your body the more successful you will be in building muscle and recovering from your workout.
Oats are your best friend when it comes to prepping your muscles for a workout as they provide glucose to fuel them.
They are also a great choice for losing weight, as they encourage your body to burn fat quicker in order to fuel your muscles.
Try oatmeal pancakes around three hours before exercise for a tasty treat that will enhance the effects of your workout by slowly releasing sugar, keeping your energy levels on an even keel during your workout.
Trail mix is a combination of dried fruit and nuts developed as a food to be taken on hikes. Nibbling on it is an excellent way to top up on the minerals you lose during a workout.
Trail mix provides protein too, which is essential for building muscles and prolonging optimum energy levels, so this is the perfect go-to snack before, during, and after your exercise.