Not fueling properly is one of the most common mistakes people make when they becoming more physically active or “amping up” their workouts.

Sneakers, water, towel and earphones on the wooden backgroundSkipping meals and snacks, especially before and after any physical activity, can cause you to “bonk” – a condition of sudden fatigue and loss of energy, minimize your ability to build muscle.  It may even cause drastic dips in blood sugar that will have you running to the kitchen or nearest drive-thru STARVING and unable to make sound nutrition choices.

When it comes to fueling your workouts, it is important to note that timing is everything! Check out the following tips…

PRE-WORKOUT

Go into your workout with fuel in your tank!  Be sure to have either a snack or small meal 45 minutes to 2 hours before your workout.

A good choice is carbohydrate containing foods with moderate to low protein and fat. The carbohydrates will help fuel your workout, and with lower protein and fat, digestion will be quicker, reducing the possibility of gastrointestinal discomfort.

POST-WORKOUT

Be sure to eat a snack or meal consisting of both carbohydrates and protein, ideally within 30-45 minutes of completing your workout.

The carbs help replenish the glycogen lost in your muscles during your workout, while the protein provides amino acids that facilitate muscle repair and rebuilding. Depending on the time of your workout, you can either eat a snack followed by a meal two to four hours later, or you can go straight for a meal.

HYDRATE, HYDRATE, HYDRATE!  IT’S SUMMER… DON’T FORGET TO DRINK WATER BEFORE & AFTER YOUR WORKOUT!

A FEW PRE WORKOUT FUELING IDEAS

1 hardboiled egg + ½ apple

1 brown rice cake + 1-2 slices turkey

½ cup Greek yogurt + ½ cup berries

1 banana

½ RX bar

1 cup low-fat chocolate milk

KIND bar w/ 5 grams or less of sugar

1 small potato + ½ cup cottage cheese

A FEW POST WORKOUT FUELING IDEAS

1 cup low-fat chocolate milk

1 brown rice cake + 1-2 slices turkey +

1 Laughing Cow cheese wedge

1 small potato + ½ cup cottage cheese

16 oz. 2% milk latte

References: http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/in-depth/the-best-foods-to-fuel-a-workout/
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