10 Best Foods to Eat Before Your Workout
Getting ready for the gym starts with a good snack. Here's what you should eat about 45 minutes pre-workout.
Shutterstock / JeniFoto
Strawberries contain simple carbohydrates (carbs that can be broken down quickly to be used as energy). They have potassium, too! From a workout standpoint, the sugars will give your body an energy boost and the potassium will help prevent any muscle cramping.
Shutterstock / VelP
Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich
If you work out in the morning, consider having a PB&J. Two tablespoons of peanut butter contain eight grams of protein, and one tablespoon of jelly contains 12 grams of sugar. Be sure to enjoy on a slice of hearty whole grain bread like this one!
Shutterstock / JeniFoto
Greek Yogurt with Fruit & Granola
Consider having plain Greek yogurt with fruit and granola before a workout. The healthy sugars in the fruit and granola will send quick-digesting carbs to your muscles for energy. Plus, one individual container of Greek yogurt contains about 17 grams of protein. Power up!
Shutterstock / Sunlike
Cottage cheese contains a significant amount of protein—about 25 grams per cup. It’s made of whey protein and casein protein; casein will feed your muscles over a long period of time while whey helps your body burn fat and build muscle. It’s a win-win snack.
Beets are rich in nitrates, so drinking beet juice pre-workout will help facilitate more nitric oxide production within the body. (It sounds too science-y, but bear with us.) Nitric oxide relaxes your blood vessels so oxygen can flow more freely. That means you’ll be able to power through a workout more efficiently!
Shutterstock / Aleksey Korchemkin
Whey Protein Coffee Shake
Drinking caffeine pre-workout will provide you with extra energy, and adding whey protein will fuel your body with exactly the right amount of carbohydrates and protein. (Bonus: Whey protein contains all of the essential amino acids, which help build and repair muscles.)
Banana with Peanut Butter
To prevent any muscle cramps during a workout, consider fueling up with bananas. One banana has about 420 mg of potassium, which will get your body ready to work!
(For a Saturday morning splurge, you might even have banana pancakes for breakfast.)
Shutterstock / hkhtt hj
If you’re on the go and don’t have enough time to digest a proper pre-workout meal every day, try Gu Energy Gels. Gu Gels have about 450 mg amino acids, 55 mg sodium, 20 mg caffeine and about 22 grams of carbohydrates. In other words, it’s exactly what you need to replenish energy!
You want a nutritious pre-workout boost? Granola bars are easy to make–and some recipes don’t even require the use of an oven. Use any ingredients including dried blueberries, cashews, almonds, dates and honey.
Here’s our expert how-to guide on making ’em yourself!
Shutterstock / Brian A Jackson
Cereal is quick and easy, and something that you can eat about an hour before your workout. (Here are the healthiest cereals you can eat.) Pair the cereal with skim milk to create a nice ratio of protein to carbohydrates. To add more simple carbs for energy, toss in fresh fruit.
Pick one of these snacks, and get ready to feel the power during your workout.