The effect your exercise will leave on your body has a very profound connection with your eating habits. Whether you are a high school football player or a professional athlete or even if you exercise only to remain fit; eating will affect your exercise and exercise will affect your eating. Whether to eat before your workout or to work out before you eat; remains an unanswered question for most. Read on to find out the answer.
Should You Eat before or after Working Out?
1. If You Work Out in the Afternoon
Very well known by most, food requires almost 2-3 hours to be completely digested. So, if you plan extensive exercises you can even feel nauseous if you have eaten just before exercise. Another important fact is that, when you eat your bloods become busy digesting and absorbing nutrients from your intestine. Given the two reasons, it’s recommended to eat after workout.
Eating after exercise assists in developing muscle mass. Just after exercise the stored glycogen has been consumed and its levels are low; when you replenish the stores of glycogen in your body; it enhances recovery from workout.
Five Post-workout Replenishing Meal Ideas:
- Poached eggs (1-2) with whole-wheat toast
- Bean burrito: tortilla (whole-wheat) with black beans, reduced-fat cheese and salsa
- Stir-fried chicken with pepper, zucchini and carrot (or any other veggie of your choice)
- Whole-wheat pasta mixed with chicken, broccoli and eggplant
- Whole-grain cereal or oatmeal, with fruit (such as a sliced banana) and milk
2. If You Work Out in the Morning
Eating habits in this case utterly depends upon the type of workout you exercise. For light jogging or brisk walk, a glass of water or fresh juice before you start is sufficient. If you perform extensive exercises, consider easy-to-digest carbs (instant grits, plain bagel, a banana, orange or a cup of fruit cocktail).
This is recommended because after a good night sleep your stores of essential carbs must have been depleted and a quick fuel is required for the workout you are about to perform.
For early birds, a not-too-heavy snack is recommended almost 1 hour before working out. It can be an orange or an apple or a cereal bar. Take a water bottle along with you to remain hydrated. Drink loads of water both before as well as after you have worked out. It is highly recommended for people who exercise in the morning to remain hydrated the entire day.
Should I Eat Before Workout When Trying to Lose Weight?
When you exercise with your empty stomach, more of your deposited fats are burned and utilized to produce energy. On the other hand, when you exercise after a bite of carbohydrate, your body gets the energy to perform durational exercises. In this manner you can work out harder; burn more fuel to lose fat.
If you work out to improve your performance, eat before exercise. If you work out to lose weight, eat something if you feel you don’t have enough strength to perform sustained activities. But remember to use more energy than you ingest.