Best Pre and Post Workout Meal for Muscle Gain and Fat LossSonali Malik
The utmost requirement for being healthy is a good diet. But when you are looking forward to targeting fat loss and muscle gain, the pre and post-workout meals significantly impact your training.
The more properly you’ve properly before workouts, the higher intensity training you can go for. And when the post-workout meals are optimized, the recovery is enhanced and your body gets ready for another session of training!
Carbs are important!
See carbohydrates as fuel for your muscles that work as an engine for your body. The harder your body works, the more carbs it needs to make sure it keeps going without any damage.
So you might ask- how soon should I have my meal before a workout?
Well, it depends.
As your general rule, you shouldn’t eat just before beginning your workout as your stomach needs some time to digest food. It will impact your performance. And more so, when you eat food too close to workouts, it can cause some kind of GI discomfort while you are training or playing.
Ideally, depending on the kind of pre-workout meal you are having, the body needs 1 to 3 hours depending on the way your body accepts food. I recommend experimenting with it a bit to see the time frame that works perfectly for you. If you are a beginner, let these durations be a bit longer. If you are an athlete, it will be something that one has to explore while the training days and not on the game day.
Suggestions for Pre-Workout Meals:
- When You Have Half An Hour In Hand:
- Fruits like Banana, Apple, Dates, Coconut water.
- Green Smoothies.
- Protein Shakes (Not recommended for beginners, only take it if you include workouts based on strength training.)
If this will be your first day of workouts, make sure that you have a very light snack. Don’t experiment too much and have something simple and light.
- When You Have Hour Or More Of Time:
- Peanut Butter Sandwich.
- Oat Meal.
- Granola Bar.
Notice how I have included some carbohydrates and Proteins in the suggestions. Carbohydrate is your fuel. Protein helps with repairs and rebuilding the muscle fibers. Having carbs and protein in your system gets critical for post-workout recovery too.
Suggestions for Post Workout Meals:
Your body has used the stored glycogen (energy) for powering through the workout session. But after this, the nutrients we lost need to be replenished.
What Should You Do?
Once you complete your workout, focus on having protein and carbohydrates in your body. This will provide the muscle to replenish lost glycogen and assist muscles for repair and rebuilding with your available amino acids and proteins.
Here are some of the Pre-Workout Meals that you can have:
- Low-fat milk.
- Berries with Low-fat yogurt.
- Sandwiches with veggies.
- Fruit smoothie.
As you can see most of the options above have carbs, you can add protein shake as per convenience and depending on the kind of training you are on.
How Soon Should I Have The Post-Workout Meal?
Usually, it’s suggested that you should have your meal within an hour of your workout completion. Can get it within 30 minutes? Even better! After a workout, our body is well primed for receiving vital nutrients and absorption is much better.
Why focus on time so much? Well, when our body is exhausted of the nutrient reserves after a workout, it is going to resort to muscle breakdown for fueling itself. And we don’t want that as it works against our health goals!
It is so important that you have water during and after your workouts. Depending on the kind of training, sip on water while you are working out as it keeps you hydrated. This in turn will optimize the internal body environment and maximizes results.
We lose electrolytes and water through sweat during workouts. Having enough water post-workout can assist with performance and recovery as well. It is also important to replenish the fluids in case the next workout session will be within 12 hours. As per workout intensity, you can have an electrolyte drink or coconut water for replenishing the fluid loss.
Consuming the right amounts of protein and carbohydrates before and after a workout is essential. It stimulates the synthesis of muscle protein, enhances performance, and improves recovery. You mustn’t go longer than few hours for your post-workout meals or snack. Finally, drink lots of water as well as electrolytes for completing the picture of maximizing the workout benefits for muscle gain and fat loss.
Are you ready for your turn now? Consult team Sonali Malik for a complete nutritional requirement assessment and a customized pre and post-workout meal plan for muscle gain and fat loss.