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Pre-Workout Meal Planning – Improve Your Fat Burning Potential!
Although many of us think about what we eat for breakfast, what we are going to eat for dinner, and the like, but how many of us truly think about what we are going to eat before we exercise? Or for that matter, afterwards. It really does make a world of difference.
If you ask the majority of people what they plan on eating before their exercise routine, the majority will probably say that either they hadn’t thought about it, or they planned on not eating in order to avoid the calories. However, this would be mistake as the food you eat before you exercise is what will fuel your workout, as well as maximize the results. When you give your body the proper fuel before a workout, you will have the energy to exercise harder and avoid those light-headed moments as well as fatigue burn out.
Having said that, you need to avoid certain foods before a workout as they will do the opposite and slow down your efforts. For example, you should avoid fatty meals as fat tends to stay in the stomach longer, which means you are going to feel full and are going to be more inclined to take a nap rather than settle down on the treadmill. Carbs are a good choice here but avoid candy or raw sugar as these can cause that sugar high that feels great at first, but you are going to quickly burn that out during your exercise program, and then you get that terrible sugar crash. Be sure not to overeat, either, as doing so can cause cramps, nausea, and even vomiting. Think of the suggestions below as more of a snack rather than a meal.
About one hour, or slightly less, try eating one of the following to give your body the fuel it needs to complete your exercise routine and help your body burn fat.
1. Fruit smoothies
These have high quality protein while still having a good amount of carbs. They are quick and easy to consume and are quickly digested by the body. Try making one out of about ½ cup of organic fruit of your choice, ½ cup of plain yogurt, and then one cup of pure fruit juice. (Not sweetened) Many people think that eating protein before they work out is best but protein takes a long time to be digested by the body and it won’t be available to your body in time for your workout. The carbs in fruit will break down very quickly and then the protein will be available later to protect your muscles from damage and allow them to rebuild. Find out more recipes of super healthy and healing smoothies.
You can think of bananas as nature’s own Power Bar. These are simply loaded with fuel for your body in the way of digestible carbs and are full of potassium, which is important for maintaining muscle and nerve function. Your body doesn’t keep large amounts of potassium so eating a banana before your workout will keep your potassium levels high. Eating a banana is even more helpful for those who like to exercise in the morning. Try eating a half a banana cut up in a ½ cup of Greek yogurt in the morning, about 30 minutes or so before you exercise. Or try a slice of whole wheat bread with just a bit of peanut butter, topped with banana and cinnamon. Your body will have those carbs and proteins at its disposal when you hit the gym. Learn about cinnamon bebefits.
Oats are high in fiber, which means those carbs are going to be gradually released into your blood. The great thing about oats is that, although they are high in fiber, you won’t be playing the tuba at the gym. (In other words, it won’t give you gas) This steady stream of carbs will keep your energy levels high while you are working out. Besides being high in fiber, oats also have B vitamins, which convert those carbs into the energy you need. Have about one cup of oats about 30 minutes before your exercise program.
4. Wholegrain bread
This is another terrific source of carbs. The great thing about bread is that it has a wide variety of partners. You can add a bit of raw honey, jam, or a tablespoon of nut butter. You could even slice up a hardboiled egg or a few slices of avocado. If you plan on hitting the gym during your lunch break, you can eat a sandwich with wholegrain bread about 45 minutes before you work out. A turkey sandwich on whole grain bread would be a great combination to eat for those who like to work out mid-day.
Serve yourself up some apple wedges with almond butter or peanut butter for a great pre-workout energy level boost without the crash. Read more about super powers of a humble apple.