No matter what outcome you want from your exercise, it could be building up strength, weight loss, or getting ready for an endurance event, the food you put into your body is essential for getting the results.
The importance here is to get a good balance of the nutrients that are important for exercise; protein, carbohydrates, fats and vitamins and minerals. The key word here is balance. If you get your proportions right, you’ll see an improvement in the outcome of your training,
As a general rule for meals when you exercise, make sure about a quarter of your plate is protein. Chicken and fish are great choices if you eat meat, but chickpeas, lentils and other pulses are also excellent. Share the remaining plate space between fresh veggies or a salad, and complex carbohydrates such as wholemeal pasta or sweet potato. Balance this out with essential fatty acids found in nuts and seeds, and lots of water, to flush bad fats out of your system.
It’s vital to fuel your body before you exercise, to make sure you are burning fat, rather than the protein of your muscles. The best food choice is a combination of protein, and a complex carbohydrate, which combined will give you the power you need for your exercise. Porridge with peanut butter, wholemeal bread and a poached egg, or yogurt with berries and flaxseed are great pre-workout meals.
Eating the right foods after exercising helps to repair the muscle tissue damage that working out causes. Combine protein, carbohydrate and fluid to help your body adapt and repair faster.
Choose protein to help rebuild muscle. Choose chicken, turkey, or eggs, which are full of protein, and can be incorporated into most day-to-day dishes. If you feel like you’re not getting enough protein through your diet, or your workout needs even more of a boost, protein shakes by MaxiNutrition could also help. Protein shakes do the work of the protein in your food, and rebuild your muscles. Add some carbohydrate to replenish your body’s energy supplies, and wash it down with plenty of water to re-hydrate your system.
If you want a little bit of an energy boost in between meals, avoid grabbing a packet of crisps, or craving a sugar hit, by giving one of the following a try:
By making these alterations to your diet, you should get even more benefit from your exercise – and get the most out of your hard work!