How are you fueling, performing, and recovering for your workout?
Here are some basic tips to help you crush your workouts and feel your best!
What to eat?
When preparing your pre or post workout meals, the goal is to have food that’s easily digestible and absorbed like lean protein sources and carbohydrates. For example, egg whites and oats, or chicken breast and white rice. A protein powder supplement paired with fruit is also a great option.
The window surrounding your workout time should not include fat. Fat is a slow digesting macronutrient and will prevent you from processing and utilizing the other macronutrients as fuel before and during your workout as well as recovering afterwards.
Meal timing comes down to personal preference and the type of workout but having your pre workout meal at least two hours and as close as thirty minutes before your workout will help give you the fuel needed to perform. There’s a lot of opinions on when the best time is to have your post workout meal or supplementation and again, I believe this comes down to personal preference, experimentation, and knowing your body. This time can range from immediately following your workout to an hour afterwards. I personally don’t recommend going beyond an hour. A couple hours before and after your workout is when I recommend implementing some quality fat back into your diet.
H2O and Electrolytes?
Summer days in the gym are hot! It’s very easy to quickly become dehydrated, feel overheated, and develop symptoms such as headaches and muscle cramps. A good place to start is keeping track of how much water you’re taking in throughout the day. A general rule of thumb is about half your body weight in ounces.
Balancing water and electrolytes (mainly sodium and chloride) is essential for not only performing and feeling well but the functioning of all your organs. Our workouts are intense, especially this time of year, in the heat. Sweat during our training sessions can compromise the regulation of water and electrolytes, in our bodies.
Ultimately, this can vary from person to person, depending on how much you sweat, what your diet looks like, as well as the intensity and duration of your workout. However, I recommend supplementing your water bottle or pre workout drink with an electrolyte powder, salt tablets, or my favorite, regular table salt, to see if it has a positive effect on your performance.
Experimenting, knowing your body, tracking and recording your results will help you be at your best during your workout and recovering for the next one.