Posted by: NIx | 2008/08/21

Eating before a workout

I train at 8am and really battle to eat anything before i gym. What snacks should I force myself to eat for max energy.

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Our expert says:
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HI Nix

This is quite a common question, and the answer is that it doesn't really matter that much. Some have said that it's best to train on an empty stomach because it 'forces the body to burn fat, and while this has some truth to it, the practical consequences far outweigh the theory - that is, people might have to eat before they train, because they can become light-headed if they don't. On the other hand, if you don't become light headed or weak if you train before you eat, then eating afterwards is fine. It's also been said that you must eat within the first hour after training, because that would be when the body is most able to take up and use the energy. That may be true in theory, but the reality is also that if you didn't eat in the first hour, but only a few hours after, your body would still be energy depleted and that energy would be very welcome by the body.

So ultimately it's a practical issue. Some people, for example, can't eat soon after training because exercise kills their appetite. Others can only eat, they get so hungry from exercising that they have to eat pretty much straight away. So you have to listen to your body, and as long as you do eventually put back what exercise took out, you'll be fine.

As for what you eat, if you have to eat before, then something very light is best. Try to avoid anything high in fibre, and so fruit might be a no-no before training. During the session, some kind of fruit is not too bad, but like I said, it depends on the person and the situation.

If I were you, I'd try to get away with NOT eating before, unless it's really impossible, and rather have some kind of energy drink DURING the training, with a meal waiting for you afterwards.

Hope that helps!

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Our users say:
Posted by: raeez | 2008/08/27

i have never ate anything before my workout,,,i burn alots of calories.when i get home from the gym then i have a healthy meal.

Reply to raeez
Posted by: T-man the PT | 2008/08/22

get yourself a meal replacement suppliment or a snack energy bar.

Reply to T-man the PT

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