While choosing a pre workout meal, one should check whether it provides the body with the required calories. Fluids need to be given preference for meals because they digest quickly. Here are a few examples of meals to be taken before an exercise routine.
A pre workout meal should have a blend of proteins and carbohydrates. It helps in maintaining strength and energy during workouts. The pre-existing stores of energy are used by the body during an exercise. Thus, one should take care of eating in a timely manner to maintain those stores.
Carbohydrates are core ingredients in preparing the best meals, which can be taken before a workout. They provide the required amount of energy and prevent protein stores of the body from depleting. As per the recommendations of ‘American College of Sports Medicine’, it is necessary to ingest enough fluids, two hours before any athletic activity. One should consume 17 oz. of fluids before a workout. There is a thumb rule to check whether a person has taken enough fluids. If the urine is clear, prior to performing an exercise, one could be sure that he has consumed enough fluids/water. One should avoid dairy fluids because, they are hard to digest.
If heavy meals are consumed before a workout, there should be a gap of 3-4 hours between food intake and exercise. When the body is being worked out, almost 80% of the blood flows towards muscles. The digestive system is deprived of the necessary blood supply in the process. Therefore, it is advisable to wait for 3-4 hours after a heavy meal. The lighter snacks also, should be consumed one hour before exercising. It yields good results, if the physical activity is going to last for more than 1 hour.
Pre Workout Diet for Fat Loss
Meal that one can have before a workout for fat loss should contain those carbohydrates which do not allow blood glucose levels to rise sharply. Skimmed milk and yogurt are some of the examples of such carbohydrates; they facilitate the process of fat burning. Technically, these are known as low-glycemic index carbohydrates.
The following snacks would provide necessary energy before a workout.
- Whole Grain Bread Meal: The meal contains whole grain bread as its main component. There are, however, many other items included in this breakfast recipe. The food items to be consumed in this meal are – 1 slice of whole grain bread, 1 cup yogurt (low fat), 1 fruit (any), 1 tbsp., jam or honey, and water (8 oz.).
- Oatmeal Snack: This breakfast meal contains oatmeal, a single fruit, cottage cheese and water. The oatmeal preparation should be cooked in water and the quantity should be ¾ cup. The cottage cheese used for breakfast should also be ¾ cup. Along with these food items, a glass of 8oz. water and 1 fruit should be consumed.
The ingredients of heavy meals mentioned below would provide required energy and balanced diet for the body.
- Heavy Meal 1: This heavy meal should contain 5 wheat thin crackers and other salad items. A single cup of split pea soup, which is canned should be consumed. Tossed green salad (2 cups) and shredded iceberg lettuce (2 cups) are the main salads. ½ cup diced cucumber and tomato should also be included in the diet. The remaining items of this heavy meal include, 2 tbsp., oil and 8 oz. water.
- Heavy Meal 2: The main ingredients of this heavy meal include, fruits, cottage cheese, and sunflower seeds. Watermelon chunks (1 cup), grapes (½ cup), and strawberries (½ cup) are the fruits to be consumed. The cottage cheese (1 cup) to be used, should have a low fat content. 1 tbsp., sunflower seeds and 8 oz. water completes the list of ingredients of this diet.
The above meals should provide required energy and also promote proper digestion. As mentioned above, the heavy meals should be taken 3-4 hours before the exercise. Remembering these key points would help in constructing a well-balanced diet plan before any workout routine.