Pre-Workout Fuel

It is critical to keep your body well nourished and fueled to get the most benefit from your workouts. But what should you eat and when should you eat it? What and when you eat depends on the kind of exercise you are going to do. 
People who exercise in the morning should rise early enough to eat a healthy breakfast before running, jogging, walking or other exercise. You will need to replenish your blood sugar and hydrate your body. Drinks some water when you first wake up and eat a variety of fresh fruits and whole grain foods. Eat breakfast about 2 hours before you plan to start your morning exercise routine. If you are going to eat 1 hour or less prior to exercising, eat a light breakfast of fresh fruit like bananas or grapefruit, orange juice and whole wheat toast.  
Photo Credit: Aleph CC-BY-SA-2.5 2007
Many people like to take advantage of their company fitness center during their lunch break. Before heading to the fitness center or gym on your lunch break, eat a small whole-grain pasta salad and drink a glass of water no sooner than 2 hours prior to working out. If you don’t have time to digest a light lunch before your workout, eat a snack of whole wheat crackers and hard cheeses or fruit and yogurt before exercise. These foods can provide the complex carbohydrates and other nutrients your body needs. Carbohydrates are essential for energy, so don’t skip a snack before a workout. For late afternoon workouts, add some protein to your pre-workout meal. Natural peanut butter, turkey, white meat chicken or beans are a good source of protein. 
Avoid eating a heavy meal less than 3 hours before working out. The less time between the time you eat and the time you plan to begin your workout, the less you should eat. If you’re in a rush, grab some fresh fruit, cheese and whole grain crackers. Carbohydrate-rich foods are easy to digest and provide all the energy your body needs for stamina. Drink plenty of water before, during and after your workout to avoid dehydration.
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About Robin R.
I’m an AFPA certified personal trainer & nutrition consultant, NASM certified corrective exercise specialist, NASM certified youth exercise specialist, online fitness coach and freelance writer specializing in health and fitness. I hold a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Science in natural health. I specialize in weight loss, functional strength training, total body toning, aerobic conditioning, plyometric training, nutrition planning, and home-based boot camp style workouts for women. My goal is to make every personal training session fun and effective for my clients. My services include both in-home personal training and online fitness coaching.

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