Perfect Workout Nutrition in 6 Easy Steps
No matter if you’re an experienced fitness enthusiast or just a novice at working out, we can’t emphasize enough the importance of proper nutrition. What you eat before and after your workouts really matters a lot, so keep on reading if you don’t know how to come up with the right nutrition plan. Check out our useful tips and get it done like a true pro!
Pre-workout nutrition: what to eat before a workout?
In case you weren’t aware of that fact, your pre-workout nutrition is as equally important as spending a lot of time exercising at the gym, which is why you need to come up with a perfect pre-workout meal plan. Knowing what to eat and fueling your body with the right nutrients before your workout will give you enough energy and strength to perform better, so here are three important tips you should take into consideration:
● Protein is absolutely inevitable…
The first thing you need to know is the fact that your muscles are actually made from protein fibers. Simply put, your pre-workout diet needs to be rich in protein if you want to build more muscle, so make sure to eat foods such as eggs, fish, chicken, turkey, and pork, as well as various seeds and nuts, which are the best sources of protein. For most people, a daily dose of about 1g of protein per 1 kg of body weight will be more than enough, whereas around 2g of protein per 1 kg of body weight is a recommended dose for weightlifters and strength athletes. In case you were wondering, eating protein before exercise can increase your strength and muscle performance, as well as improve your muscle growth, which is why your pre-workout meals need to be rich in protein.
● … As well as carbs
Did you know that your muscles actually use the glucose from carbs as fuel during a workout? We bet you didn’t, so stop paying attention to people who say that you should completely stay away from carbs when exercising. First of all, you should know that shorter, high-intensity sweat sessions use your glycogen stores, which are your muscles’ main source of energy. On the other hand, longer workouts are highly likely to use up all your glycogen stores, which is exactly where carbs should step in – especially if you want your muscles to stay strong. Carbs have the power to increase your glycogen stress and boost carb oxidation during exercise, which is why you shouldn’t skip them before your workout!
● Don’t skip the healthy fats either
Similarly to glycogen stores, which are used for short, high-intensity workouts, fats can be perceived as powerful fuel for longer, moderate-to-low intensity exercises. Some studies have even shown that increased fat intake can be quite beneficial when it comes to your athletic performance. Of course, we’re talking about unsaturated fats that are usually found in seafood, nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils, which are the best sources of healthy fats you can intake. Avocados are a huge must, as well as olive oil, salmon, tree nuts, and many more, so be sure to incorporate them into your pre-workout meals as soon as possible!
Post-workout nutrition: what to eat after a workout?
Speaking of post-workout nutrition and the process of muscle recovery, you should know that the things you eat make a huge difference, so make sure to book an appointment at The Wellness Centre if you need help with your diet plan. Similarly to pre-workout nutrition, you’ll have to eat a lot of protein, carbs, and healthy fats in order to speed up the process of recovery, so keep on reading and find out why.
● Protein repairs and builds the muscles
As already stated, your muscles are built from protein that gets damaged every time you work out. This is particularly true for intense workouts, so make sure that your post-workout meals are rich in protein that will repair the muscle and help it grow properly. Consuming the right amount of protein after a workout will provide your body with amino acids it needs to rebuild the protein your muscles are made of. Besides that, it’ll also give your body the building blocks to build new muscle tissue, so try to ingest between 20g and 40g of protein after a workout and you’ll see what we were talking about.
● Carbs help with recovery
Consuming carbs after a workout will help you replenish your body’s glycogen stores which, as mentioned above, are crucial during longer workouts. Of course, the rate at which your body uses up your glycogen stores depends on the activity, but we can say that endurance sports are highly likely to use more glycogen than resistance training. So, if you enjoy running, swimming, and similar activities, you’ll probably need to consume more carbs than an average bodybuilder. Eating plenty of carbs is essential if you exercise often, such as twice a day, so make sure to eat your carbs and you’ll be more than fine!
● Fats aren’t that bad – not at all
Even though a lot of people think that eating fats after a workout will slow down their digestion and prevent the absorption of nutrients, we must say that this isn’t completely true. Yes, fats may slow down the absorption of your post-workout meal, but guess what? They won’t reduce its benefits, which is why you should make them a legitimate part of your meals. Some studies have shown that muscle glycogen synthesis wasn’t affected after ingesting a high-fat meal, so go for it and you won’t regret it. However, you should definitely limit the amount of fat you eat after a workout, so that you don’t eat too much of it and slow down the process of recovery.
As you can see, coming up with a perfect nutrition plan when working out doesn’t have to be as tricky as you probably thought. All you have to do is to stick to our tips when it comes to both pre- and post-workout nutrition and you’ll nail this task like a real pro, without a shadow of a doubt!