Monday, April 27, 2009

One More Addition About Food

One more quick addition about food...I'm getting a few questions about what to eat before and after a workout. I'm going to answer this question assuming that the person asking it has no major medical issues (i.e. heart conditions, diabetes, epilepsy, high blood pressure) and that the person asking it is geared for weight loss, toning, and burning of fat ("getting in shape").

When we say "before" a workout we mean 1-2 hours have to give your body a chance to digest the meal before putting the workload of strenuous exercise on your system, otherwise you might experience cramping, stomach pains, constipation and/or incontinuity, other gastro-intestinal issues, and dehydration. The National Association of Sports Medicine (NASM) recommends that your pre-workout meal be a blend of carbohydrates, protein, fat, and fiber...more specifically, 50-60% of the meal carbs, 20-25% protein, 20-25% fat, and 5-10% fiber. Common pre-workout meals that I recommend include:

  • apple with cheese (2-3 small slices)
  • celery with peanut butter (about a tablespoon)
  • yogurt with granola (about a tablespoon)
  • 1/2 cup uncooked or cooked oatmeal
  • small (6-8 oz.) fruit smoothie (milk, yogurt, fruit, protein supplement)
  • granola bar with milk

There are several other combinations and types so please feel free to add or remove others as long as you stick to the basic breakdown. These pre-workout meals should be relatively light (200-300 calories) and should provide the body a good blend of nutrients your body will need prior to workout. I would also recommend all meals accompany 8-16 oz. of water.

Your post-workout meal should be eaten 40-60 minutes after the workout and should be a higher blend of protein (50%), lower blend of carbs (20-25%), fat (10-15%), and fiber (5-10%). The post workout-meal should be a bit higher in calories (400-600)...some common examples include:

  • egg white omelete with ham and cheese
  • turkey and swiss sandwich with lettuce, tomato, mustard, light mayo
  • cottage cheese and apple sauce (organic) with banana
  • large (12-16 oz.) fruit smoothie w/protein supplement
  • cheese, apples, and crackers (low-fat)
  • bran muffin with string cheese

Again, these are just ideas and intended for those trying to burn fat and lose weight. Consult with your medical professional. Feel free to post more ideas or email me questions.


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