The Best Pre and Post Workout Meals Explained
However, after a few months of research I have found that my best workout and recovery performance comes when I have a pre-workout meal as well as an easily digested meal immediately after my last set. Sure, it is probably overkill but it has
worked for me and that is what is important.
I typically workout in the morning before work which means I have very limited time to get a meal of any
substance in. However, I actually don’t like to workout after a heavy meal. In addition, I find that if I don’t eat something about and hour before I workout then the workout suffers as my energy is down and I don’t have the gas in the tank to lift some heavy weights or get through the metabolic conditioning.
With that in mind, I keep it light and try to get some fast acting carbs in with a bit of protein. In addition, I throw in some caffeine in there for a bit of a pick me up which I also find works nicely.
The Pre-Workout Meal Recipe:
- One cup unsweetened apple sauce
- 30 grams of chocolate or vanilla whey protein
- Tassimo hot chocolate
- Tassimo Cappuccino or Latte with Espresso
I eat the apple sauce and protein mixture at around 5:00 am which is one hour before I hit the gym. I drink the mocha coffee on the way to the gym. This meal makes me feel great and provides me with exactly the right amount of energy I need for my workout.
Post-Workout Meal #1
My post-workout meal is not my invention. The guys at 2110 Fitness put me on to it and it is a recipe put
together by THE name in sports nutrition Susan Kleiner. In her book Power Eating (in my opinion this is the only nutrition book you need to buy if you want to learn about how to eat for performance) she gives a few really good recipes, but the one I like the most is her Muscle Building post-workout formula for men.
This is the quick meal I take right after I am done the workout.
The Post-Workout Meal Recipe:
- 1 cup skim milk (I use Lactaid milk)
- 1/2 cup calcium fortified orange juice
- 1/2 cup strawberries
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 30 grams whey protein (ON tastes the best – click here)
If I have access to a blender then I mix this up and down it. If I don’t have a blender then I eat the strawberries whole and then drink the rest. Either way it takes awesome and based on Susan’s research it works to help recover from a tough workout.
Post-Workout Meal #2
About an hour (or so) after that blender drink I eat my first full meal which usually is breakfast. In this meal I try to get a good mix of carbs and protein and even a little bit of fat. I like this balanced meal as it totally fills me up as I am usually starving at this point and want something to hold me for a couple of hours at work.
This meal is not going to satisfy the paleo folks at all as it includes grains, but I find I do well with grains and like them, especially after my met con sessions.
Post-Workout Meal #2 Recipe:
- 1/2 cup dry quick cook oatmeal
- 1 cup water
- 1 whole egg
- 30 grams raisins
- 10 grams unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seed
To make this, just crack the egg into the dry oatmeal and break the yolk. Add the water and stir until it is really mixed. Pop it in the microwave for around 1:25 and stir. Add the raisins, coconut, and flax seeds. I sometimes add some Walden Farms Pancake syrup on it for additional flavour. It tastes awesome with or without it.
At the end of the day, as long as you get a balanced meal in with enough calories no matter what time you eat it you should be fine. A lot of diet gurus like to convince you otherwise, but until you really get down to low body fat it is just noise. These pre and post-workout meals taste great and will help you grow.