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Fueling Your Workout: Pre and Post-Exercise Nutrition Tips

Are you looking to maximize the health benefits of your workout? Fueling your body with the right pre- and post-exercise nutrition can make all the difference. Eating the right food and drinks at the right time is essential for getting the most out of your workout and helping you feel energized both during and after your session. Read on for some helpful pre- and post-exercise nutrition tips to make sure you’re doing your workout the right way.

1. Harness the Power of Pre-workout Nutrition

One of the most important aspects of a successful fitness routine is pre-workout nutrition. By ensuring that your body is well-fueled before your workout, you’ll be able to maximize your performance and recover better afterwards. Some of the key elements of pre-workout nutrition include:

  • Carbohydrates – Carbs are essential for providing energy to your muscles during exercise. Choose complex carbohydrates such as whole grains, beans, and starchy vegetables for sustained energy.
  • Protein – Eating protein before your workout can help to increase muscle growth, enhance recovery, and reduce fatigue. Sources of lean protein include cottage cheese, poultry, fish, and lean cuts of beef.
  • Fats – Healthy fats are often overlooked in pre-workout nutrition, but can be incredibly beneficial. They provide an excellent source of slow-burning energy that will help fuel your exercise. Sources of good fat include olive oil, nut butters, and seeds.

Additionally, hydration is extremely important before and during your workout. Choose a sports drink or coconut water to ensure that your body is well hydrated and operating at optimal efficiency. Aim for 16-24 ounces of fluid per hour of exercise.

By making sure that you provide your body with all the nutrients it needs before your workout, you’ll be able to reap the rewards of your hard work more easily. Pre-workout nutrition is an essential, yet often overlooked, element of any exercise routine.

2. Refuel After Your Workout for Maximum Results

Any good workout deserves proper refueling. After a great sweat session, it’s important to feed your body the right food and drinks to help you get back on your feet, fast. Here are some top-notch ways to refuel and get maximum gain from your exercise session:

  • Rehydrate with water: Most of us know how important it is to stay hydrated, especially after a good workout. Water helps to replenish the fluids our bodies shed during exercise. Drink up for maximum health and energy.
  • Eat healthy carbs: Whole grains, brown rice, quinoa, barley and sweet potatoes are all delicious, nutritious carbohydrates that will help keep your energy up and your body running like a well-oiled machine.
  • Incorporate protein: Adding a bit of lean protein to your meals is essential. Protein helps to repair and build muscle from your workout, and can help to prevent fatigue and cramping.
  • Enjoy fruit and veg: Eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables can help to make sure you’re getting essential vitamins and nutrients. Antioxidant-rich citrus fruits are particularly great for a post-workout snack.

Refueling the right way is the key to getting full advantage from your exercise session. There are of course many other foods you can enjoy post-workout, but when trying to maximize your results, these are a great place to start.

3. Meals on Wheels: Maximizing Mobility & Convenience

Meals on Wheels is an essential program for maximizing the independence and quality of life of the homebound. With over 5,000 local programs in all fifty states, Meals on Wheels provides seniors, people with disabilities, and veterans with a hot and nutritious meal, along with socialization services. Here are some of the ways that it benefits those that utilize the service:

  • Increased Mobility – By reducing the effort it takes to access and prepare food, Meals on Wheels helps to keep seniors and people with disabilities living at home. This helps ensure that individuals remain part of their communities instead of having to relocate to an assisted living or nursing home.
  • Variety and Nutrition – With menus designed to be balanced, hearty, and appetizing, Meals on Wheels helps to combat malnutrition in seniors, through a variety of accessible meals. In addition, homebound individuals who see a single food provider may develop food aversions or boredom, making their meals particularly important in providing something different.
  • Short Term and Permanent Needs – Meals on Wheels can act as a bridge to help people transition from an illness or injury to self-sufficiency. In more permanent cases, it provides important nutritional and social contact on an ongoing basis.

The convenience of Meals on Wheels is especially important for family caregivers who are juggling work schedules and other demands while trying to care for their elderly loved ones. By providing the equipment, supplies, and food needed to make meals for their loved ones, Meals on Wheels can be a great help in easing the caregiver’s burden.

Meals on Wheels is an invaluable program for providing nutritional and social support to those who are homebound or unable to prepare their own meals. Not only does it provide a hot and nutritious meal, but it also helps to preserve the independence of seniors and those with disabilities.

4. Snack Smart & Stay on Track

Sometimes, reaching for that tasty chip or cheesy cracker can be tempting. It’s okay to give in to cravings, as long as you also snack smart and stay on track with your diet. So, here are some of our favourite snacks that are both yummy and guilt-free.

Smart Carbs
Get your energy fix with smart carbs that are big on flavour and nutrition. Try toasting a slice of Ezekiel Bread and topping it with almond butter, cinnamon, and banana slices. Or try air-popped popcorn sprinkled with garlic powder, a pinch of oregano, and a touch of chili powder.

Healthy Fats
Sometimes you just need something hearty and satisfying. That’s where healthy fats come in! Try filling a few bell peppers with a mix of black beans, quinoa, and shredded cheese, and bake for a delicious snack. Or choose some nuts and dried fruit for a satisfying treat.

Get your protein fill with snacks that are tasty and convenient. Try a slice of turkey on whole grain crackers, or dip your veggies in hummus or guacamole. For a sweet protein fix, try a Greek yogurt parfait with mixed berries and a sprinkle of granola.

Congratulations—you now have the tools you need to fuel your workout for greater strength and performance! Implement the pre and post-exercise nutrition tips highlighted in this article and you’ll be joining the ranks of those who have successfully pushed themselves to reach their fitness goals. Here’s to a healthier and more invigorating workout experience!

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