A good diet can help your body perform well and recover quicker after each workout. Optimal diet intake prior to the workout will help you to maximize your performance.
A combination of carbohydrates and protein is recommended for pre-workout meals. Fat can also be beneficial, but it should be consumed at least two hours before exercise.
- A cup of oatmeal with banana and almonds
- Nutrition bar with protein
- Fruits such as banana, orange or apple
- Sweet potato
Keep in mind that you don’t need to eat many pre-workout meals at different times. Just choose one of these.
According to the Journal of the International Society of Sports Medicine, taking protein and a little carbohydrate is best immediately after exercise. Here is the diet which supports speed up recovery, maximizes exercise benefits:
- Protein shake made with banana, almond, and milk
- Multi-grain bread with peanut butter
- Salad with baked chickpeas
- Paneer and Soya milk
Before the gym: Banana with almonds or sprouts after gym: protein shake and egg white or paneer. It is important to observe your eating habits throughout the day. In my case, since my focus was to gain weight, I was advised to never leave my stomach empty. Eat moderately but eat frequently was something I was told to follow.
First, and most important: Lot’s of water during the days you exercise. Hydration is crucial. Don’t drink a lot immediately before a workout (That might make you puke during heavy workouts). Spread it around the day, especially if you are taking protein supplements. Your kidneys require the water to flush out excess waste.
Second, if you are planning to add bulk, increase the proteins in your diet. Whey protein and Creatine supplements are very helpful for this purpose. A high protein meal or a protein shake immediately after the workout is vital. (Note: A single egg gives around 3-4 gms of protein)
Working out tends to increase your appetite a lot. While, you do need to eat more food, eating a lot of carbs (Rice, potatoes, etc) and sweets won’t help you if you are trying to lose weight or get ripped. Eat food items containing higher proteins and fibers (Oats, vegetables, nuts, eggs, meat). These food types tend to satisfy your hunger for a longer duration compared to rice. If you want to gain muscle mass, eat more often rather than eating a few large meals. Carry food with you to work.
As others have already mentioned, a banana before the workout helps. Having a small glass of lime juice before a work out helps a lot. It replenishes water, sugar and salts. This prevents cramps during a workout.
- Supplement with 5 to 10 grams of baking soda (with creatine if you wish) before you hit the gym.
- Get a protein shake immediately after, 20 to 30 grams of protein along with enough carbs to replenish your muscle glycogen.
- Get at least 8 hours of sleep on workout days.
- Lay off the alcohol – Anything more than one large beer will negatively affect your metabolism for 48 hours, wasting all the time and effort you spent in the gym.
I started hitting the gym a few weeks back and I’m on a purely natural diet. This is what I do pre and post gym-
Eat a banana and honey sandwich half an hour before workout.
Stretch your body nicely before starting lifting.
Do a very light weight 25 rep set for the muscle you’d be working on a day.
Cool down stretches.
If you worked your abs out, don’t drink water for half an hour.
Have a strawberry smoothie and some eggs.