I get lots of questions about what we should eat when are exercising and living an active lifestyle. While you may not think of your time at the gym as a time to chow down, it is very important to remember that how you fuel your body for exercise is crucial to your workout.
I hate to say this, but sometimes our workouts burn less calories than we think! We need to keep in mind the intensity of our workout before we snack. We may only burn 100 calories when we run or walk a mile, but may be consuming a 250-calorie energy bar or 400-calorie smoothie. If you are doing a low-intensity activity, like a morning walk, it is good to focus on a small, carbohydrate-rich snack. Try 16 oz. of water and a 100-calorie granola bar or mini bagel. After the workout, refuel with carbs and add protein. An egg, a slice of whole-grain toast, fat-free milk, and 4 oz. of 100% juice make a healthy breakfast. You can even great protein from 100-calorie or Lite-n-Fit (80-calories) Greek yogurt.
If you work out in the evening, try to eat lunch 3-4 hours before exercising. Sandwiches and soups or salads are usually good options that will provide you with enough energy to make it through the afternoon but not drag you down to keep you away from your trip to the gym. To give you an extra boost before your workout, snack on fruit 15-30 minutes before. After your workout, if you are heading home to eat dinner shortly after, there is no need for a refueling meal.
Try not to skip breakfast and try to make lunch a lighter meal of the day, then give yourself the quick boost before your workout. ALWAYS remember to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water. Keeping up with your 8 glasses a day is one of the best things you can do when exercising. Also, I know that one of the hardest things to do is not reward yourself with a high-calorie food or drink post-workout. Trust me, I understand! How can there be so many donut shops on the way home? But you can do it! Reward yourself with new workout gear to make you feel even more confident in your healthy lifestyle instead 🙂 (or a movie with some light, snack-bag popcorn!).
Thank you again for checking out the blog! As always, be sure to post comments or questions!