Pre-Workout Nutrition: What to Eat Before You Exercise


In general, you should select foods and beverages that provide your body with adequate carbohydrates and fluids. It is important to give your body the fuel and hydration it needs to perform a vigorous workout.

The amount of food you consume should reflect when you plan to exercise. If you eat within 2 hours of a workout, choose something light such as a cereal bar or a banana. But if you plan to eat more than 2 hours before a workout, aim for a smaller meal that is around 400 to 500 calories.

To avoid stomach discomfort, avoid foods that are high in fiber, such as bran. Foods that are high in fiber (as well as those high in fat and/or protein) also take longer to digest.

Aim to drink 7-10 ounces of water 10-20 minutes before a workout. An additional 17-20 ounces is recommended 2-3 hours prior, if possible.

Keep track of what you eat and how you feel. Everyone is different, so it is important to listen to your body and identify the foods and beverages that make you feel best!

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