Pre and Post Workout Nutrition
What to eat before & after workout?
If you are new to working out and fitness lifestyle, maybe you don’t know that nutrition is the key to good results. Meals around your workout session are most important meals you’ll have. Pre workout meal will give you the energy required for your workout session and post workout meal will give you all the nutrients required for your muscle repair. If you are working out hard, you must focus on nutrition even harder.
Nutrition is the most important thing for any kind of result, weight loss, muscle gain or just health. Your body needs about 114 nutrients every day, and your goal must be to give your body all of them.
If you are reading this article, most probably you are already in the gym, you are training and you need some advice about nutrition. First, you need to boost your metabolism, this means to eat a 4-5-6 meals a day depends on how your day looks like. But 2 meals are the most important, pre/post workout meals. This period is about 4 hours (pre-workout meal, workout session and post workout meal) and your body significantly increase capacity to build muscle because it is the time when the body is most in demand, but also need the most of the nutrients that you need for the process of muscle growth.
The pre-workout meal is second most important meal in the day. Main goal of PWM is to prepare your body for your workout session, to give you energy that you can use trough out your session of pouring it on the iron.
During your workout session, your body uses sugars for energy, and if you want to have that sugars. The sugars that your body needs you can find in food, your muscles and in the fat, fat is sugar that you haven’t used so it is stored in fat. Here is some fat loss tips to take those sugars and use it in your session.
First when you start to work out, your body burns the sugars stored trough out your body, and those sugars you need to replenish, so your body starts a process of glycolysis. Glycolysis is the process of conversion sugar (carbohydrates) into ATP, a form of energy that your body uses for muscle contraction.
Second, don’t forget on your protein intake BEFORE your workout session. During your session the carbs and protein are fairly digested, so your muscle repair starts when you are still working out. A couple hours before, I would suggest cottage cheese, because of casein, and 90-60 min before workout, chicken breast or eggs. And for carbs, oatmeal, rice, or fruits, try to stick with slow releasing carbohydrates.
For me, I always tried to consume a 100 grams of carbohydrates, and 30 grams of protein before working out, I eat a 60% of total daily carbs before workout, and 40% after workout.
You can also eat some fast digesting carbs, for me it works great, some mini “cheat meal”, but you must train in 60 min if you eat some fast digesting carbs, so they can’t go to your fat reserves.
Don’t eat fat before working out, it will slow your metabolism and that is something you definitely you don’t want to happen.
Pre workout meal will give you the energy and the strength for your session, so play a little bit, try different things before and see what works best for you.
Post workout meal
You have hit your iron, and your muscles are sore, you are tired, but feeling awesome. Now it’s time for some good post workout meal. I would recommend a post workout shake with minimum a 30-40 grams of protein with BCAA and some sort of amino acids. When you drink your food, like shake, it digest faster than regular food and that is something you want and need.
The main goal of post workout meal is to quickly and efficiently deliver the fuel that your muscles have used and allow them to repair itself, and to build new muscle tissue.
Half an hour after your workout session, your body has a process called “protein window”, this means that in half an hour your body is in state of shock and want to replenish all cells that are broken, like muscle fibers of replenish glycogen cells. And in these half an hour absorption of these nutrients is much faster and efficient.
An hour after your post workout shake, it’s time to eat, but this time solid food, but what?
After a workout session your body needs glycogen and protein, and you have to give it all. And if you remember a casein I’ve mentioned before, casein is slow releasing protein and it will help your post workout recovery a lot, but you need more protein.
I like to eat a fast digesting carbs to get my insulin level a little higher, because insulin is like a “gate opener” and it helps nutrients to go to your cells and to repair your body.
Like I’ve mentioned, a 40% of daily carb intake I eat after my workout, and minimum of 40 grams of protein.
Eat a variable sorts of protein, eggs and cheese, chicken and fish, add some soy, pees or beans, so you will get a different combinations of amino acids in your “protein window”.
Eat a fruit right before your post workout solid meal, like an apple or banana, sugar goes up, insulin is here. Or even some chocolate bar, I tend to eat a dark chocolate after my workout session because of magnesium. Don’t forget on your vitamins and minerals after your workout. Antioxidants are very important after your session because they protect your body against free radicals that are often produced during hard workout sessions. A glass of water with lemon will help you, combine vitamin C with a vitamin E for even better protection.
Magnesium is also a great nutrient that your body needs. It helps with synthesis of protein in your muscles. Magnesium may speed recovery and help protect you from inflammation due to how it regulates gene expression
What to eat after a workout session?
Mainly focus on protein. Like chicken, fish, eggs and etc. And don’t to forget to rehydrate. If you don’t consume enough water, a lot of nutrients won’t absorb. Drink a 1L of water during of your workout and before your solid post workout meal drink a 0,3L of water, it will help your body to recover faster.
For the end, this were some advices on your pre and post workout meals, what you should eat, and way, but for the end, test yourself, maybe some of these things won’t work on you, but mostly they will. Try with types of protein, carbs, and see how your body responds to it, if you eat a fast digestive carb before workout, maybe you’ll be strong as Hercules, or maybe you will feel sluggish in the gym afterwards, so try what works best for you. What kind of protein is the best for you, what you can eat after, which protein shake works best for you.
Thank you all for reading, hope it is helpful, so stay tuned and share!