Yes, having a pre-workout meal is crucial to have a better workout. Exercising on an empty stomach will make you feel weak and tired, and you’d likely call it quits before you complete your workout session. Worse, you may feel dizzy or lethargic and accidentally injure yourself. However, even more important is what you eat before your workout. You need a balanced meal of carbs, proteins, and fats to provide you with the nutrients to fuel your workout session. Continue reading to for some pre-workout recipes to help you have a better workout.
5 Pre-Workout Recipes For A Better Workout
Below are five pre-workout recipes for meals to eat before your workout sessions. You’ll also find several pre-workout meal suggestions for weight loss, bodybuilding, seniors, and more.
1. YouFit Trainer Pre-Workout Recipe For Energy
Whether it’s cardio or strength training, you need to keep your energy levels high to power through a sweat-breaking workout session.
Complex carbs are essential for pre-workout meal recipes, as they will give you the strength to perform better and longer. You also need lean protein for synthesizing and protecting your muscles. Here’s a pre-workout recipe for energy shared by YouFit Gyms personal trainer, Devin Shelton.
Energy-Boosting Pre-Workout Recipe by Devin Shelton
Prepare a bowl of cereal containing oats, cinnamon, and peanut butter. You can throw in some chia seed, fruits such as bananas, and almond milk. Cinnamon helps with blood pressure, peanut butter for an extra bit of protein, and chia seed for digestive health.
Other Pre-Workout Meals For Energy
- Yogurt parfaits with granola and fruit
- Whole grain bread with peanut butter
- whole-wheat toast, hard-boiled eggs and blueberries
2. Pre-Workout Recipe For Weight Loss
It may sound counterproductive to have a pre-workout meal when trying to lose weight. “Shouldn’t you be consuming fewer calories?” Yes, you should. But, you still need a balanced meal to give you the energy to run through your cardio workouts.
If you don’t eat a pre-workout meal, your body will break down your muscles to fuel your workout — muscles, not the fat you want to get rid of. So, the trick is to have a pre-workout meal that would fuel your workout sessions, but also won’t add more calories to your body.
Weight Loss Pre-Workout Recipe
Make a low-calorie omelet with three egg whites and only one yolk. This will provide you with protein and healthy fat to improve muscle performance. You can eat it with chicken breast for an added boost of lean protein.
Other Pre-Workout Meals For Weight Loss
- Oatmeal with raisins or berries
- Sweet potatoes and fish
- Banana with almond butter
- Protein bar with dried fruit
3. Pre-Workout Recipe For Bodybuilding
When performing bodybuilding workouts, the goal is to stay lean and build muscles. So, you need a small pre-workout meal of fast-burning carbs and lean protein. The former will release energy fast into your muscle as you pump, while the latter will prevent muscle breakdown.
Bodybuilding Pre-Workout Recipe
Cook a small portion of rice and chicken breast. Rice is a fast-burning carb that will provide you with energy quickly, and chicken is a lean protein that will help your muscles. Serve with an ounce of avocado to slow down the complete digestion a little bit.
Other Pre-Workout Meals For Bodybuilding
- Light tuna and orange
- Lean steak and potatoes
- Oatmeal and whey protein
4. Pre-Workout Recipe For Women
Although the essential needs for a pre-workout meal are similar for both genders, women have to be careful to eat more low-calorie foods. This is because, typically, women don’t burn as many calories as men. According to the Dietary Reference Intakes, men burn approximately 400 calories more per day than women.
Women Pre-Workout Recipe
Blend oats, milk, banana and protein powder to make a protein and banana shake. This provides a balanced meal of carbs and protein that will get you through your workout with minimal calories.
Other Pre-Workout Meals For Women
- oatmeal sweetened with honey
- Fruit smoothies made with almond milk
- whole-grain crackers with cheese
5. Pre-Workout Recipe For Seniors
More than anyone else, seniors need a pre-workout meal to get the energy needed to work out. However, attention should be paid to possible health conditions. For instance, seniors with diabetes need more slow-burning carbs that would slowly release sugar into the blood.
Seniors Pre-Workout Recipe
Take one or two slices of whole wheat bread and spread some low-fat cheese on it. This provides slow-burning carbs and protein that will provide energy throughout the workout session. Also, low-fat cheese is easy on the stomach. But, you can replace it with scrambled egg whites if you are sensitive to dairy products.
Other Pre-Workout Meals For Seniors
- Brown rice and chicken breast
- Whole wheat bagel with jam
- Oats, low-sugar whey protein, and a banana.
When Is The Right Time To Eat A Pre-Workout Meal?
In addition to what you eat for your pre-workout meal, it is also vital when you eat. You shouldn’t work out with a full stomach or an almost empty stomach. So, when should you eat before your workout?
Well, the right time to eat before working out depends on the type of meal. However, the ideal time for a pre-workout meal is between 30-minutes to 3-hours before your workout session. The former for when you eat fast-digesting foods, and the latter for foods that digest a little slower.
Essentially, you should avoid eating right before a workout. Even if it’s just a smoothie or a light meal, allow at least 30 minutes before starting your workout. This prevents your body from overworking itself to digest the food and provide energy to fuel your workout.
Fuel Your Workout With YouFit Gyms x Eat Love Nutrition Program
Knowing what to eat, when to eat, and even preparing meals can be a hassle. Fortunately, the YouFit In-House Nutrition Program, which is available in partnership with EatLove, makes it incredibly easy to eat healthy while working out to crush your fitness goal.
Beyond getting assistance with your pre-workout meal, the program provides guidance and support to help you eat healthy all through the day and meet your fitness goals. Click here to learn all about the YouFit In-House Nutrition Program.