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Are you confused about what to eat before working out or are you looking for the best foods to eat before a workout?
Here is the most comprehensive list of the best pre-workout foods.
It is proven that 50% of your body structure depends on foods you eat, 40% of body structure depends on exercise, and the rest 10% of the body depends on genetics.
So if you know which foods you should eat or not eat, you have won half of the game of bodybuilding.
GYM BUDDIES are generally very much concerned about pre and post-workout foods.
Both foods have their own importance.
Here, we will discuss what foods you should eat before the workout in deep.
This list of best pre-workout foods is used and recommended by almost all fitness experts throughout the world.
Include some of these foods in your pre-workout diet and then see at which level they facilitate your workout.
(Results will be awesome…!!!)
Before listing down the best pre-workout foods, let’s first discuss the importance of these foods and what type of foods you should eat before a workout.
1. Importance of Pre-workout Foods
Have you ever wondered why bodybuilders and other “gym-goers” focus on pre-workout foods?
It is because our body needs the energy to do high-intensity exercises. This energy comes from stored fat and glycogen (carbs).
When you eat carbohydrate-rich foods, your body converts those carbs into glycogen which gives you energy during the workout.
This energy helps you increase your power, stamina, endurance, and overall performance during the workout.
Many times it happens that you have just started exercising and you start feeling hungry.
If you feed yourself with pre-workout foods that we will discuss below, you will feel filled.
Pre-workout foods also raise the glucose level which helps you do the workout above 60 minutes easily.
There are many people who work out in the morning and avoid pre-workout foods. It is wrong.
No matter whether you work out in the morning or evening, you have to fill yourself with pre-workout foods.
In short, eating before the exercise gives you the energy needed to train harder for a longer period of time.
Dehydration is often seen in “Gym goers” during the workout. Pre-workout foods also keep you hydrated throughout the workout.
Importance of Pre-Workout Foods
- They Provide you energy for upcoming hardwork
- Don’t let you feel hungry
- Keeps you hydrate
Looking at such benefits, I don’t think pre-workout foods should be considered an option. I consider them a must.
You should also consume them for better performance, focus, endurance, energy, power, and stamina.
2. What Kind of foods are the Best Pre-workout Foods?
Of course, you should eat healthy foods before a workout.
But when it comes to pre-workout foods, you should consume foods that are rich in complex carbohydrates, moderate in protein, and low in fat.
Complex carbs will provide you energy for the workout, proteins are rich in amino acids which protect muscle fibers from breaking.
You also have to ensure that the foods you are eating before the workout are low-fat foods.
It is because excess consumption of fat lowers protein absorption which is not good because after the workout your body will require much more protein.
Here, we are not recommending zero-fat foods. Of course, your pre-workout food must contain healthy fats but in low amounts.
This combination of macronutrients (High carb+moderate protein+low fat) will provide you with enough energy to work out for a longer period.
You should also avoid high protein foods because foods rich in protein and fat tend to lower the absorption of carbohydrates.
Foods high in protein and fat are also difficult to digest. So eating them just before the workout can cause indigestion or stomach discomfort.
Kind of Foods to Eat Before Workout
- High in carbs
- Medium in protein
- Low in fat
Note this:- You will also have to eat foods that are rich in B vitamins. Because B vitamins help the body to convert carbohydrates into energy.
3. When to Eat Pre-workout Foods?
Well, it depends on the foods that you eat.
If you eat high-calorie foods (e.g. bread with peanut butter and banana) before the workout then you should eat them 1 hour before the workout.
Because it will give your body some time to digest it.
Otherwise, it can cause indigestion and stomach discomfort.
Some foods are high in carbs and low in protein and fat. You can eat such foods (e.g. orange) 15-20 minutes before the workout.
Don’t ever try to exercise just after a heavy meal. Your body can’t digest and exercise at the same time.
On the other hand, if you eat low-calorie foods before 1-2 hours of workout then you will feel hungry during a workout.
And hunger can literally divert your focus and you will end up exercising very early.
So it is very important to care about timings and type of foods.
When to Eat Pre-Workout Foods
- If your food is heavy then take it before 1-1.5 hours before workout
- If it is a light food then take it 15-20 minutes before exercise
4. Types of Pre-Workout Foods
There are generally two types of pre-workout foods.
- Heavy pre-workout foods
- Light pre-workout foods
1) Heavy Pre-Workout Foods
The heavy pre-workout food provides us with lots of energy so that we can do more exercise.
Due to this, we consider them good but the main problem is when you do exercise beyond the natural capacity of the body, the recovery takes too much time.
And your body feels sore on next day. So we should avoid them.
Intense energy drinks, artificial supplements, etc are heavy pre-workout foods.
2) Light Pre-Workout Foods
Light pre-workout foods also provide us energy but it is not of that level that forces us to do more and more exercises.
They just provide us with enough energy so that we perform better during the workouts.
Here, we have only discussed the light pre-workout foods because I am always in favor of them and never recommend heavy pre-workout foods.
Let’s discuss light pre-workout foods.
5. List of Best Pre-workout Foods
After discussing the important topics, now we will move on to discuss the best foods that you should eat before a workout.
As mentioned above, these foods must be rich in carbs, moderate in protein, and low in fat.
1) Banana + Almond + Honey
This combination is my personal favorite. I eat this mixture 20 minutes before the workout.
Bananas provide enough calories to work out for 1-1:30 hours. Honey provides carbs and boosts energy. Almonds are rich in protein, healthy fats, and vitamin E.
It is also beneficial for people who train in the early morning and don’t have time to prepare any pre-workout dish one or two hours before.
This mixture is also said to give glowing skin.
Here, you have to make sure that the bananas should be ripe. (unripe banana is one of the foods that cause constipation)
The honey should also be 100% pure and not synthesized.
If this mixture passes on all these quality parameters then it can be one of the best pre-workout foods.
2) Peanut Butter Banana Sandwich
It is a 100% healthy and most effective pre-workout food which you should consume at least one hour before the workout.
You will need:
- 2 slices of multigrain/whole wheat bread
- Peanut butter
- 4 almonds, 4 walnuts
- 1 rice banana
Method of preparation:
- Slightly toast both slices of the bread
- Spread peanut butter on one of them
- Crush the almonds and walnuts and sprinkle them on the bread
- Also, cut the banana and put its pieces on that bread.
- Cover that bread with the other piece of bread.
- Enjoy your sandwich one hour before the workout
If there are just 10-15 minutes remaining for your workout then you should this great fruit.
It is my personal experience that after eating 1 or 2 oranges, you won’t get dehydrated. I even don’t require water throughout the workout.
So orange is highly recommended to eat as a pre-workout food.
It is also rich in vitamin C and dietary fiber. But remember, if you are 1 hour away from your workout then don’t just depend on orange.
Also, take some high-calorie foods (mentioned above) with it.
Otherwise, you will feel hungry during the workout.
Just a moment:- Don’t consume any fruits except bananas and oranges if you are working out in the evening. Because it will increase your fat.
Eat fruits as pre-workout foods only in the morning. (You can eat a banana and an orange as pre-workout food in the evening)
3) Egg omelet sandwich
It is one of the best pre-workout foods. It will keep you filled throughout the workout. Don’t forget to eat one banana with it.
You can also apply avocado spread to the sandwich.
It is a high-calorie pre-workout meal so always eat it before 1 hour of the workout otherwise you may suffer from stomach discomfort.
Also, use very minimum oil to make omelets to avoid unnecessary fats.
4) Peanut/Almond Butter sandwich with sweet potato
You can get the necessary macronutrients from it. You have to eat this before one hour of your workout.
Sweet potato is a rich source of carbohydrates. Eating sweet potatoes before 30-60 minutes of a workout will provide you with enough energy to exercise for a longer period.
So it is recommended to eat before a workout to get enough amounts of carbs.
Peanut butter or almond butter will provide you with enough calories to work out for longer sessions.
5) Fruit smoothies
Fruits smoothies are also very good as pre-workout foods. They can provide all the macronutrients you want to enhance your performance during the workout.
I will recommend you to sweeten fruit smoothies with 100% pure honey and not with sugar or sugar-free products.
6) Yogurt + Honey & Boiled Eggs
Boiled eggs are rich in protein, honey provides you with enough carbs, and yogurt is also an easy-to-digest food.
Consuming this mixture 20-30 minutes before the workout will provide you with enough energy and will keep you filled during the exercise.
You can also add dry fruits to it.
It is also recommended to eat yogurt and honey once a day before evening no matter whether you work out or not.
It is because yogurt is rich in calcium and honey has anti-micro bacterial activities. So consuming them will definitely benefit your body.
(Calcium is very important for strengthening our bones)
7) Black Coffee
I don’t have to discuss the benefits of consuming black coffee before a workout because everyone knows it.
Consuming black coffee before 15-60 minutes of the workout loads you with energy to enhance your performance to a supreme level.
Though it is a high-energy provider, I will recommend you not to drink it every day as you will get habituated to it.
Consuming it 2-3 times a week is fair enough.
If you don’t love the bitter taste of black coffee you can also consume light energy drinks that contain caffeine.
But if you want to keep yourself away from hunger during the workout, eat some pre-workout foods discussed above before drinking an energy drink or black coffee.
The myth related to black coffee-
I have seen many fitness trainers advising that you should drink black coffee in the morning. It is wrong. You should not start your day with caffeine.
Coffee is not going to give you energy in the morning. Instead, you should eat fruits if you are working out early in the morning.
8) Beetroot-Mint Juice
It is one of the best light food that can be consumed before 30-40 minutes of a workout.
You will need:
- Black pepper
Method of Preparation:
- Extract the juice from beetroot and mint using a mixture or whatever electrical device you have.
- Add one tablespoon of lemon juice to one glass of beetroot-mint juice
- Add a pinch of black pepper powder
- Enjoy your juice before 30-40 minutes of workout
Mint lowers the soreness that we feel after the workout. Lemon contains vitamin C which helps the body to extract more iron from the beetroot.
Black pepper helps the body digest this juice easily.
9) Orange Oats
This pre-workout food can also be consumed by people who are on the journey of weight loss.
You will need:
- A medium-sized orange
Method of Preparation:
- Grind orange and mix that pulp with oats
- Enjoy it before 30-40 minutes of your workout
You can also eat boiled eggs with it.
Benefits: Oats are rich in complex carbohydrates and vitamin B and as mentioned above, orange keeps you hydrated during the workout.
10) Green Oats Smoothie
A few years ago, I was searching for the best pre-workout foods on google. There I found this recipe.
I tried it and found it very good as a pre-workout food. So I am mentioning this here.
You will need:
Method of Preparation:
Just grind them all in a mixture and your pre-workout smoothie is ready. Enjoy it before 30-40 minutes of workout so that it gets digested well.
11) Yogurt + Oats +Banana
This oatmeal is a very good food to eat before the workout.
Just mix oats, low-fat yogurt, and banana, and enjoy 30-40 minutes before the workout.
You can also add black raisins to it.
Consuming one of these foods before a workout can benefit you a lot with your performance during the workout.
This is all for this article.
1) What to eat before an early morning workout?
Due to lack of time, it is not easy to prepare a pre-workout meal in the morning but you can eat any fruits before an early morning workout. You can also eat a combination of almonds, bananas, and honey.
2) What should I eat 30 minutes before a workout?
- Beetroot-mint juice
- Green oats smoothie
- Almond + Banana + Honey
- Fruit smoothies
- Black coffee
- Dry fruits
- Orange oats
3) What should I eat 15 minutes before a workout?
- Black coffee
4) What should I eat an hour before a workout?
- Peanut butter sandwich + Eggs
- Omelet bread sandwich
5) Can you eat eggs before a workout?
Of course, you can eat boiled eggs before 30 minutes of workout. Also, don’t forget to sprinkle black pepper powder on them to digest them easily.
6) What should you not eat before a workout?
Don’t eat heavy meals before the workout. Also, avoid foods that are low in carbs and high in fat. You should also avoid foods that are very much high in protein because they lower the absorption of carbs.
7) Is it ok to work out on an empty stomach?
It depends on your goal. You can do it if your goal is weight loss. When you work out on an empty stomach, your body burns fat in the lack of carbs. But if you are doing a workout for more than 60-90 minutes, you should eat before the workout.
8) What foods should you eat before the workout for muscle gain?
Well, despite focusing on pre-workout foods, focus on post-workout foods to gain muscle. Eat protein-rich foods after the workout.
Here, we have discussed the best pre-workout foods.
As we mentioned, pre-workout food is very important and must be consumed by all the GYM BUDDIES.
Avoid those so-called supplements and go for natural ways.
The natural ways take time but the result they provide is just amazing and long-lasting.
You can tell me in the comment box about any pre-workout foods that you know so I can try and then include them in this list.
If you have any questions related to the best pre-workout foods, you can ask me in the comment box.
If you like this article, share it with your GYM BUDDIES…!!!
Thanks for reading…!!!