carbohydratewhich gets stored in the muscles asglycogenin the days before exercise. It takes time to completely fill glycogen stores, andwhat you eat after exercisecan help or hinder this process. Eating the right foods at the right time after a workout is essential for recovery and being ready for the next workout. What you eat before exercise often depends upon your unique needs and preferences, but should be designed according to the intensity, length and type of workout you plan to do.
When to Eat Before ExerciseExercising on a full stomach is not ideal. Food that remains in your stomach during an event may cause stomach upset, nausea, and cramping. To make sure you have enough energy, yet reduce stomach discomfort, you should allow a meal to fully digest before the start of the event. This generally takes 1 to 4 hours, depending upon what and how much you ' ve eaten. Everyone is a bit different, and you should experiment prior to workouts to determine what works best for you. If you have an early morning race or workout, it ' s best to get up early enough to eat your pre - exercise meal. If not, you should try to eat or drink something easily digestible about 20 to 30 minutes before the event. The closer you are to the time of your event, the less you should eat. You can have a liquid meal closer to your event than a solid meal because your stomach digests liquids faster.
What to Eat Before ExerciseBecause glucose is the preferred energy source for most exercise, a pre - exercise meal should include foods that are high incarbohydratesand easy to digest. This include foods such as pasta, fruits, breads, energy bars and drinks. Also see
Sports Nutrition Planning for All - day EventsPlanning your nutrition and knowing what and when you will eat and drink is essential if you are competing in an all - day event, such as track meets or other tournaments. Consider the time of your event, the amount of your meal and the energy required. Also, be aware of the amount of fluid you consume. You should plan ahead and prepare meals and snacks that you have tried before and know will sit well with you. Do not experiment with something new on the event day.
Suggested Foods for ExerciseEating before exercise is something only the athlete can determine based upon experience, but some general guidelines include eating a solid meal 4 hours before exercise, a snack or a high carbohydrate energy drink 2 to 3 hours before exercise, and fluid replacement 1 hour before exercise.1 hour or less before competition
- fresh fruit such as apples, watermelon, peaches, grapes, or oranges and / or
- Energy gels
- up to 1 1/2 cups of a sports drink.
- fresh fruits
- bread, bagels, pasta
- fresh fruit
- bread, bagels
- pasta with tomato sauce
- baked potatoes
- energy bar
- cereal with milk
- toast / bread with a bit of peanut butter, lean meat, or cheese