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The 7 Best Pre-Workout Foods
Heading to the gym and want to make sure you’re all fueled up and ready for your workout? Time to have a pre-workout snack! The right pre-workout foods can make a huge difference for your training session, run, or CrossFit workout. Knowing what to eat is crucial for helping you get ready for an intense workout, so here are a few pre-workout foods you should be adding to your daily diet:
If you’re going for a run, you’re probably going to want a banana as a pre-workout snack. Thanks to its high potassium content, it will reduce muscle cramps and encourage a better electrolyte balance. It’s also loaded with carbs and natural fruit sugars, which will serve as an excellent energy source for your workout. You’ll find you can run faster and go longer thanks to the calories you get from just one banana, paired with a glass of water.
Peanut Butter Bread
Peanut butter is a high-fat source of energy that will digest easily and absorb into your body to be turned into long-lasting energy. Paired with a slice of bread (low-fiber white bread is best before a workout), you’ll find it can fill you up just enough that you won’t run out of steam during your workout. Those 200 to 300 calories of energy you get from that peanut butter sandwich or bagel will be just what you need to keep pushing through the fatigue of an early morning run.
Loaded with antioxidants and Vitamin C, a handful of berries can also be a great energy booster to help you run farther and longer. They’re definitely good as a post-workout food—thanks to the anti-inflammatory properties they contain—but you’ll find they can also work well before your training session. Just don’t eat too many; their high fiber content can leave you bloated and feeling too full for a proper workout.
Many athletes take caffeine pills or caffeinated pre-workout supplements, but why not skip the supplement and go straight to the source with a cup of coffee? Coffee will give you energy to push harder at the gym, stave off fatigue for longer, and reduce the aches and pains common with an intense workout. Just make sure to avoid the cream and sugar, and go for a small serving (espresso cup size is ideal!) of black coffee to perk you up and get you ready for a run or HIIT workout.
Egg and Toast
Combining a protein-rich egg with a slice of white or whole wheat toast provides you with everything you need for your workout: carbs from the bread, and protein and fats from the egg. You’ll find that this low-calorie snack (around 200 calories) is the perfect way to fill up your stomach and give you the energy to push through your workout first thing in the morning.
Greek Yoghurt and Fruit
Pairing a small serving of Greek yoghurt with one piece (or serving) of fruit will give you the protein, carbs, and fats that you need. The high-protein yoghurt will help fuel your muscles, while the fat in the yoghurt will work with the sugars in the fruit to serve as your primary energy source during the training session. Just make sure to give your stomach at least 30 minutes to digest the heavy yoghurt!
Protein bars and nutrition bars can be a great source of both protein and carbs to fuel your workout. They tend to be fairly low in calories (100 to 250) but provide a concentrated dose of easily digestible nutrients that your body needs!