Snacking can be seen as a very negative thing, with many blaming it for the rise in obesity in our modern times. Snacking if you are careful of what you are eating however, can not only be healthy, it can help you perform better. When it comes to working out your body needs fuel and it also needs to recover. That is why pre workout and post workout snacks are important. That said, as important as they are they also need to be tasty and interesting as well as nutritious.
Looking for inspiration? Perhaps these examples will help you shake up your snacking foods somewhat.
Pre Workout Snacks
- Boiled eggs on wholemeal toast – quick, filling, tasty and protein packed.
- Two egg omelette – fill with ham and vegetables for a tasty pre-workout snack.
- Protein yogurt topped with berries (Greek yogurt contains decent amount of protein and carbs)
- A handful of nuts
- Pre-workout ready-made drinks and energy bars
- Oatmeal bars (homemade is better as you have complete control over what goes in)
- Banana and peanut butter topped wholegrain bagel
- Small bowl of whole-wheat pasta with turkey and avocado
- Cooked chicken, great for grabbing and going.
Timing is everything when it comes to pre-workout snacks as they are designed to stave off hunger and fuel your exercise. The general rule of thumb is to enjoy your snack 30-40 minutes before your workout (too soon and you might throw it back up!), however take into account the fact that everyone’s metabolism is different and adjust times to suit you.
Post Workout Snacks
- Protein pancakes (top these with your favourite healthy toppings)
- Cereal and milk (or milk alternative), quick and easy
- Eggs and bagels, or eggs and veg
- Hummus, peppers and a wholemeal pitta
- Wholemeal rice cakes topped with peanut butter, or almond butter and raspberries
- Shakes and smoothies, maximise the post-workout power of your shakes using fresh ingredients and focusing on recovery-focused foods
- Dried fruit (palm of the hand portion), an apple and cheese
- Post-workout shakes and drinks (not always the tastiest option but good on the go)
Having your snacks prepped up and ready saves time and allows you to eat as soon as you’ve showered (etc), giving you a boost, replacing lost energy and warding off post-workout hunger.
Don’t forget to rehydrate and replace lost salt too!
Do you have any top tips for pre and post-workout snacking? What foods do you find the most effective (that taste the best)?