Monday, February 13, 2012

Whole Foods to Fuel Your Workout

What you eat and drink before and after exercising can greatly affect your workout and your energy level throughout the day.

pita sandwich
A pita sandwich is a healthy post-workout meal.

What do you give your body before you ask it to perform for you? Using whole foods to fuel your workout can improve body composition and strength, promote recovery and maintain immune function.

Trust that your body can utilize specific nutrients to aid in your workout: Carbohydrate spares protein as a fuel source; protein regenerates damaged muscle tissue; and fat acts as a vital energy source for longer low to moderate intensity exercises.

Pre-Workout

Create pre-workout fuel that is high in carbohydrates, adequate in protein and moderate in fat and fiber. Three to four hours before your workout, try:

  • Peanut butter and honey on toast
  • Fruit and yogurt smoothie with granola
  • Turkey and Swiss sandwich with fruit and a sports drink
  • Oatmeal with brown sugar and almonds with milk and a banana

Thirty to 60 minutes before your workout:

  • Sports drink, gel or bar
  • Piece of fruit or jam sandwich

Post-Workout

Support recovery with a nutrient-rich snack within 15 to 60 minutes after workout:

  • Smoothie made with yogurt and frozen berries
  • Sports drink (carbohydrate, electrolyte, liquid) with a sport bar (carbohydrate, protein)
  • Graham crackers with peanut butter, low-fat chocolate milk and a banana
  • Whole wheat pita sandwich with turkey and veggies, pretzels and low-fat milk

 If you do not have an appetite after working out, then choose liquid foods to meet recovery goals.

To learn more about your individual needs, consider making an appointment with a nutrition team at Bastyr Center for Natural Health by calling (206) 834-4111. For more information about sports and nutrition, check out the Sports, Cardiovascular, and Wellness Nutrition group from the American Dietetic Association.

— Angela Waco, dietetic intern, and Debra A. Boutin, MS, RD, chair and dietetic internship director, Department of Nutrition and Exercise Science at Bastyr University.

FALL 2014
Have questions about a program?
Request information »

More Health Tips

Birth plans are a terrific way to communicate your wishes for your baby’s birth and immediate postpartum care.

Medical journal articles report solid evidence that our bodies can reduce chemical burden by safe, simple therapeutic activities.

At about $1 a piece, glass canning jars let you reduce your reliance on plastic without breaking the bank.

Here are some reasons to consider visiting an ayurvedic practitioner.

The quality of our sleep plays a big role in our physical and mental health.

Eat local. Eat seasonal. Eat organic. These messages can easily become confusing. Which one is best? Fortunately, they go hand in hand

Subscribe to Newsletters

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.