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Isn’t it time yet to bust the myth that you should NOT eat anything before workout? If you still hold on to it, we have some truly convincing reasons to throw some pre-workout foods into your fitness regimen!

Do you feel lethargic too soon while you work out on an empty stomach? If yes, it’s time to try out pre-workout meal before hitting the gym! Having a balanced meal before workout helps in completing your workouts with the right amount of stamina and energy. It is not a mere performance catalyst but an excellent healer promoting muscle repair and proper muscle growth post strenuous physical activity.

What are the best foods to have before workouts?

To include the right foods into your pre-workout preparation, you should know the right nutrients that can prep up your body for the action! You cannot skip the below nutrients if your goal is physical fitness without tampering your health a bit.

1.Carbohydrates

Do you believe the age-old saying “Carbs are against fitness!”?? Then, it’s myth-busting marathon here! Carbohydrates provide a good deal of energy; yes, we mean to say that all the fuel for a great workout is in your bowl of carbs! Grab your carbs before hitting the gym to avoid getting exhausted in the initial minutes itself. “Enough for the day” is yesterday’s slogan with the right amount of carbs in the body!

During intense workout sessions, your body burns glycogen. The glycogen thus burnt is derived from carbohydrates. Choose simple carbs over complex ones, keeping in mind the ease of digestion.

The best sources of simple carbs are Oats, dried fruits, fruits like apples and bananas, granola bars, quinoa, sweet potatoes, fruit smoothies and whole grain bread.

2.Proteins

Rightly known as ‘the building blocks of the body,’ protein is a super-power when it comes to muscle repair. During intense physical activity, there can be tearing of muscle fibres. Such tears are repaired quickly with the help of proteins. Proteins are vital for adequate and appropriate muscle growth.

Some amazing protein-rich foods include milk, yoghurt, nuts, eggs, chicken, fish, legumes (like beans and chickpea) and peanut butter.

3.Fats

Unsaturated fats are highly beneficial while you are in some energy requirement for a low intensity workout. Some vitamins can be optimally absorbed by the body only when fat intake happens simultaneously.

Pick your healthy fats from flaxseeds, nuts, avocado, olive oil and canola oil.

4.Water

Proper hydration is undeniably a MUST before your gym sessions. While you sweat it out at the gym, your are all prone to dehydration if your water intake is not adequate.

Quick Tip #1: Your urine colour is your best hydration level indicator. If your urine is almost clear or slightly yellowish, you are doing a good job with your water intake. If your urine colour is dark yellow, pick your water bottle right away!

Quick Tip #2: If water sounds too boring to you, you can also add homemade sugarless fruit juice to the meal plan!

When to have food before workout sessions?

While it is important to have the right kind of food prior heading to the gym (or even some home workout sessions), it is crucial to look into the time of your food intake. Ideally, you should have your meal 1 to 3 hours before your workout begins.

What foods should be avoided before workouts?

You might have guessed some of the red flagged pre-workout foods; but, here’s your comprehensive list of foods to be avoided prior to your workouts.

1.Heavy fats like butter and cheese have to be kept away as they can induce nausea during workouts.

2.Foods that have refined sugar in it tend to make you feel lethargic and tired.

3.Vegetables like broccoli and cauliflower, with its high raffinose content (a complex, indigestible carb), can make you feel bloated.

4.Aerated drinks should be avoided as they can also make you feel bloated.

5.Spicy food can cause abdominal cramps and hence, should never be considered in you pre-workout meal!