Eating before getting on an exercise program sounds sensible, indeed. You need to fuel up, so to speak, so you’ll have enough energy to sustain a workout. You cannot afford to go hungry during a workout, otherwise you’ll easily get distracted and become weak. You will no longer be able to do the exercises consistently and effectively, which then brings to nothing the whole point of exercising in the first place.
Eating Before Exercise
You need to have food in your stomach at least an hour or two before an intense activity, even if it is five in the morning. But this does not mean that you can take in any food you see in your pantry at the time or that you can just go on a food binge thinking that you’ll be burning it off anyway. You still have to select your foods carefully, making sure that they are high in carbohydrates and that they are easy to digest. Carbohydrate-rich foods like wheat bread and dried fruits help to maintain your energy levels during the workout without putting too much stress on your digestive system.
Eating After Exercise
While much emphasis is given on eating before exercising, eating after a strenuous workout deserves as much attention. Yes, eating after exercising is just as important. There are people who are critical of others who eat after exercising, more so if they are trying to lose weight. They think that eating after working out will not keep the pounds off, but this is clearly one misguided notion. Exercising actually increases your metabolism, which means that more calories are effectively burned when you eat after you exercise.
In addition, exercising has drained yourself of energy and you would need to eat to recharge and recover from the stress of exercising. Also good amounts of potassium, sodium, and calcium are lost and you need to replace these very essential electrolytes with food so as to prevent an imbalance that can result in the development of headaches, fatigue, nausea, and dry mouth.
But again, you have to be wise in choosing your foods. Consuming one fresh banana after your workout is also recommended. Two hours later, make sure to gobble up some fish or vegetables which are rich in proteins.
And, don’t forget to hydrate yourself after you exercise. It is assumed that after your workout, you must have lost a great amount of fluids, and so rehydration is very important. A good after-exercise drink is a glass of water with one tablespoon full of organic apple cider vinegar, because organic apple cider vinegar is so rich in potassium which helps you recover faster.