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4 Best Pre-Workout Foods

Ragazza felice di mangiare un'insalata

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Exercising on an empty stomach is like driving a car without gasoline – but what kinds of foods are the best fuels for your workout? The right foods contain protein and complex carbohydrates, and they’ll provide enough energy to get through an hour of activity. The wrong foods, on the other hand, may leave you feeling empty or lethargic. Eating the right foods before working out helps to prevent low blood sugar levels while also aiding in muscle recovery later. Here is a list of some of the best foods and snacks to eat before exercising.

4. Bananas

banana sliced

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Bananas are great to eat before working out. They’re loaded with potassium, which help flush lactic acid from the muscles to prevent soreness and aid in recovery. Bananas are also unique because they can provide different types of energy depending on the ripeness of the fruit. An overly ripe banana develops higher sugar content and provides a more short-term boost of energy, whereas a banana that’s not as ripe offers more slow-burning energy.

3. Oatmeal

Tasty oatmeal with berries on table close-up

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Oatmeal is another great pre-workout food that you can eat anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour before exercise. Oatmeal is a great source of fiber, which aids in digestion and has other dietary benefits. Oatmeal slowly metabolizes into the body, providing a slower release of energy that can keep you from crashing during hard workouts. Oatmeal is also a good source of vitamin B which, during your workout, helps to convert carbohydrates into the energy.

2. Whole Grain Bread

Sliced loaf of whole wheat sandwich bread

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A few slices of wholegrain bread can provide your body with good fuel for a workout. Top your wholegrain bread with honey or jam for some added energy, or enjoy a lean lunch meat sandwich with fresh produce to aid in recovery after a workout. Stay away from white bread if you’re serious about exercising.

1. Fruit Smoothies

Cocktail of frozen raspberries, blueberries   with yogurt .

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Fruit smoothies are among the best pre- and post-workout foods because they’re so easy to customize. Smoothies are high in carbohydrates and all kinds of useful vitamins and minerals. Also, you can add as much protein as you’d like thanks to the numerous high-quality protein supplements on the market. Mix in nonfat yogurt or soy milk to add extra substance to your smoothie, or you can even add an egg. Save money by using frozen fruit instead of fresh fruit.

Steve is a fitness guru who is passionate about helping people lead healthier lives. Find Steve on LinkedIn!

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