The main goal of exercise is to create a beautiful and healthy body. And one of the main tasks to achieve this goal is your diet. In particular, the organization of diet before exercise raises many questions: is it possible to eat before exercise, and if so, how much and what is better to eat to ensure that exercise is effective and safe for health? For those trying to lose weight, the most natural way seems to be to prepare for starvation and create calorie loss. So the first and most pressing question that worries many is: should I eat before exercise?
Pre-workout food: to eat or not to eat?!
There is a belief that aerobic exercise on the abdomen helps burn fat more efficiently than an hour of cardio after a meal. And this is true: in this case, the oxidation of fats is faster. But in this case, where will the strength and energy come from? Energy begins to come from muscle tissue, not just subcutaneous fat. So if you are considering losing weight by skipping a meal before exercise, keep in mind that you are more likely to lose muscle tissue. Therefore, exercise on an empty stomach not only reduces the effectiveness of exercise, but is also a myth that is harmful to your health.
Another important part of the diet before exercise is the consumption of sugar. Anyone who has been hungry knows that after half an hour you will feel a little dizzy, tired and weak. In addition, this fatigue is not related to effective exercise, but to a lack of blood sugar that enters the body through food. So, “do I have to eat before exercise?” There is only one answer to that question: It is only needed for energy, muscle growth and muscle protection.
What to eat before training: compiling a menu
Therefore, nutrition before exercise is the basis for maintaining muscle mass. It is also an energy source needed for active exercise and protects the body from dehydration. When we stand in front of the refrigerator: what can we eat before we prepare?
To get a menu before exercise and a clear understanding of the nutrition that comes with it, you need to know how the main ingredients in the food you eat affect your body.
Pre-workout food: what proteins, fats and carbohydrates do
The main components of food are proteins, fats, and carbohydrates.
- Protein plays a role in the formation of muscle tissue and provides protection against micro-tears, stretching and bruising during exercise.
- Carbohydrates provide 70 percent of the energy used during exercise. They raise blood sugar levels, increase strength and endurance, and lower stress hormone (cortisol) levels. Foods rich in carbohydrates are called glycemic indices, which measure the rate at which products are broken down in the body. Before exercise, a person needs foods with a low glycemic index. They contain more fiber and essential glucose of natural origin, which breaks down slowly and provides the body with energy for longer. These include oatmeal, vegetables, and sweet potatoes.
- Oil is difficult to absorb and should be kept to a minimum. It is better to choose vegetable oils, so as not to block the flow of nutrients in the blood.
The ratio of substances is approximately as follows: depending on the type of training, carbohydrates – 55-60%, proteins – 25-30%, fats – 10-15%.
Basic rules for compiling a menu before training
Balance of proteins, fats and carbohydrates
Depending on the purpose of training, the diet should be monitored.
If you’re expecting a slow workout (over an hour and a half), watch out for complex carbs that break down over a long period of time.
Of course, if you’re going to do weight training, the foundation of the pre-workout menu should be protein.
If your goal is to lose weight, you need to control your calorie balance to spend more than you gain. Compound carbohydrates in vegetables, grains and whole wheat flour should form the basis of the menu.
Pick up or drop?
The ratio of calories received and expended depends on the goal: when you lose weight, you need to spend more than food for your body. If the main goal is to gain weight, then the calories received should be enough to build muscle tissue.
It is recommended to drink at least half an hour before meals and half an hour after meals to avoid loss of digestion.
What can you eat before a workout
- Protein: poultry (chicken, turkey), lean white fish (tuna, cod, red fish, carp), eggs, fish
- Complex carbohydrate sources: vegetables (celery, lettuce, carrots), potatoes, rice, cereals, legumes
- Vegetable oils (omega-3): linseed oil, olive oil, fish oil
It is best to plan your meal an hour and a half before training. If you can not eat on time, prepare small snacks: banana, yogurt or low-fat cottage cheese, healthy desserts: plums, dates, figs.
In the case of strong coffee, it is often used as an additional stimulant, which improves the functioning of the nervous system, increases stamina and stimulates the breakdown of fat cells. But it should be noted that it is not recommended to drink coffee on an empty stomach.
What to eat before a workout
As already mentioned, you should not eat high-calorie fats: they do not allow the body to absorb and absorb the necessary proteins and carbohydrates into the blood. Therefore, it is better to abandon the temptation to eat fatty, salty and sweet foods.
• fast food
• fried and smoked fatty meat
• sausage, sausage
• dishes with fatty sauces and mayonnaise
• various salty snacks
• donuts, cakes
No matter how many opinions there are about pre-workout nutrition, there are weight, health conditions and contraindications (allergies, etc.). Personal work is required.