Give yourself every opportunity to be your best!
Chef Steve Couch from Mr. Eat Right Personal Chef Services has a few tips to help keep you energized before and after your workout.
You have to eat!
It's been shown that smaller meals, consumed every 2-3 hours throughout the day keeps you energized all day long. Make sure that they are nutrition-packed and always contain some protein; the amount of protein you want, depends on when you plan to work out (See below).
·Eat your first meal within 30 minutes of waking up.
Your first meal jumpstarts your metabolism like warming up a cold car. Fill it with a mix of complex carbohydrates and proteins, such as a protein shake, Greek yogurt with fruit, or a small omelet with vegetables and toast.
·Before your workout, carbs are your friends.
Eat a mix of slow and fast digesting carbohydrates like oatmeal with cinnamon and berries, Greek yogurt with granola, or a light protein shake. Don't overdo it on the protein, here, 10-15 grams is plenty. You will need to energy at the beginning and during your workout, and these will help.
·Have a high protein snack within 30 minutes after your workout.
You want to consume about 1/3 of your protein needs immediately after your workout. Try to make sure that shakes or smoothies contain a large proportion of whey protein isolates compared with other types of protein. These are more easily digested and absorbed by muscles. Watch your added sugar, though. Too much simple sugar can derail an otherwise healthful diet. A great post workout drink is chocolate milk. Full of antioxidants, carbohydrates, water, electrolytes like potassium, and protein, it is a great recovery drink for endurance athletes like swimmers, cyclists, and long-distance runners.
·Eat a balanced meal within 2 hours after your workout
After a workout, your body metabolism is spiked for hours, so take advantage of it. Combine high-protein foods like seared salmon filets, grilled chicken breasts, and lean cuts of beef with complex carbohydrates, like sweet potatoes, quinoa, or whole wheat pasta; and low starch vegetables like zucchini squash, peppers, and spinach. This is a great time for a simple omelet, too, filled with leftover veggies and avocados. This meal will replenish your glycogen stores, and the spike in insulin will also encourage protein uptake by muscles.
·Keep Healthy Fats Around
Healthy sources of fats are very important in a balanced diet, and they help to keep your heart healthy. Incorporate avocados, almonds, canola and olive oils, and trans-fat free spreads into your diet. You'll stay fuller for longer.