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Pre and Post Workout Snacks

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Depending on how much time you have or how loud your stomach is rumbling, it’s always best to have a pre workout snack or small meal before hitting the gym, running or even your local zumba session. If you have a couple of hours to spare then a carb based meal like porridge would provide you with some much needed energy to help you get that hulk feeling whilst working out. However it doesn’t end when you stop exercising, you still need to fuel your body with nutritious snacks full of carbs and protein in order to repair your muscles and tissue.

Don’t be fooled into thinking an empty stomach will speed up your journey to getting those flat abs. The food you eat before and after a workout is just as important as what you do in your hour of health domination, so before you get going have a munch on some of these foods:

Pre Workout Snacks:

  • Oats - If you have an hour spare before heading to the gym, a bowl of carb-filled porridge will keep your hunger pains at bay and provide you with slow-releasing energy
  • Blueberries - A great addition to the previously mentioned porridge, not only do they add flavour they also hold anti-inflammatory properties than can help reduce muscle soreness and damage
  • Nuts - Especially Pistachios which are packed with Vitamin B to help give you an energy boost and also a much needed protein boost to aid your muscles
  • Ricecakes - They may taste pretty bland alone but topped with protein filled nut butters or nutrient rich fruits such as banana or strawberries, they make a brilliant low-calorie snack
  • Cottage cheese - A high protein, low-calorie food you can grab whilst you’re on the go. Tip some chopped fruit into the tub if you’re strapped for time
  • Protein Bars - Perhaps not the shop-bought varieties which are quite often packed with refined sugar. Try adding 1 cup of raw almonds, a cup of sultanas, 7 dried and chopped dried apricots, a teaspoon of nut butter and a sprinkle of dessicated coconut to a food processor and freeze for 20 minutes 

Post Workout Snacks:

  • Hummus and Pita - Homemade or shop-bought, hummus is full of protein and really tasty (although DIY hummus takes 5 minutes and is much cheaper!) so topping this on some whole wheat crackers or dipping in some toasted pita bread
  • Chia Seeds - A widely claimed superfood, these little seeds are full of Omega-3 fatty acids which help sustain energy. Mixing them with a little water can help them thicken up to add to smoothies or cereals, or add almond milk, greek yoghurt, honey and chia seeds for a quick pudding
  • Tofu - Using silken tofu for desserts and creamy foods is a great way to add a natural source of protein after a workout. In a food processor, blend 200g of silken tofu, 50g of medjool pitted dates, 2tbsp cacao or cocoa powder and even a splash of coffee dissolved in a little hot water to make a healthy mocha dessert
  • Smoothies - One of the quickest and easiest ways to get all the carbs, proteins and nutrients your body craves after working up a sweat. If you don’t use protein powders and supplements then don’t worry, there are plenty of fresh and natural ingredients that will do just the trick. Try building your smoothie with a handful of greens, fruit, a protein source such as greek yoghurt or tofu and topping with a liquid like almond milk or coconut water.

Have a go at this post-workout smoothie: 

Ingredients:

1 Large frozen banana
Half a cup of blueberries or mixed berries
A handful of spinach
1 tbsp of almond butter
1 tsp of chia seeds
1 cup of unsweetened almond or soya milk
A handful of ice cubes

Method

  • Defrost your banana at room temperature for around 10 minutes or rinse under warm water to speed up the process
  • Firstly add the spinach to ensure it mixes really well, then add the rest of the ingredients except the chia seeds
  • Pour into a glass and stir in the chia seeds, leave to stand for 10 minutes if you can to let the seeds absorb

  #Columns   #chia seeds   #protein   #clean eating   #healthy   #vegetarian   #vegan   #Fitness   #fitness food

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