Pre-Workout Food Tips to Boost Performance
Your diet and your workout performance are inextricably linked.
Everyone knows that you should be eating 1-3 hours before you go for a workout, but there's not always good information about what you should be eating. Pre-workout food will have a direct impact on how you feel during your workout. How you feel determines the quality of your workout.
In today's post, we'll take a look at some healthy food you can integrate into your pre-workout routine. The best food for physical performance doesn't need to be a secret, so keep reading and take these healthy eating tips to heart.
Carbs and Protein
Two of the most important nutrients for working out are carbs and proteins. When you eat carbs before a workout, your body can use the glucose for fuel - your glycogen stores are where your muscles obtain energy from.
How your body uses glycogen depends on the intensity and duration of the workout. The longer and more intense the run or workout, the more depleted the stores become. This is why eating carbs is important.
As far as protein goes, consuming it before a workout has been shown to increase muscle mass, recovery, strength, and performance. You can also eat foods that are high in fat to help fuel longer workouts.
Importance of Hydration
We don't need to tell you how important hydration is, both in life and in the gym, but how much do you need prior to a workout?
The American Council on Exercise recommends drinking 2-3 cups of water in the 2 hours leading up to your workout. Failing to properly hydrate before a workout can lead to muscle fatigue as a result of higher body temperature and heart rate.
For that reason, you should always have water with you while you're working out as well. A cup of water every 10 minutes will keep your workout going. It may sound like a lot, but think about how much water you lose when you're exercising and you'll realize how easy it is to become dehydrated.
There are other ways to supplement your workout beyond your actual diet. Creatine, for example, is one of the most popular workout supplements for strength training, helping to increase muscle mass, strength, and power.
Drinking coffee about 90 minutes before a workout can enough caffeine to reduce fatigue, increase strength, and burn fat. Beta-alanine, which is an amino acid, can increase your carnosine muscle stores. Carnosine increases exercise capacity, boosting muscle endurance and decreasing fatigue.
Reward Yourself with the Best Pre-Workout Food
Learning how to eat healthier is only going to make your workouts easier and more effective. The best pre-workout food contains the things we've discussed here, but a healthy diet accounts for what you eat after a workout too.
Diet is only one piece of the workout puzzle, albeit an important one. Sports & Fitness Exchange is your one-stop shop for strength and cardio equipment. Stock your home gym today by shopping for everything from strength machines and dumbbells to treadmills and exercise bikes.