Top Ten Foods To Eat Before And After Workout

Is your muscle building stuck in a rut? Top ten foods you can eat before and after your workout will change the game.


As a gym enthusiast, you are careful about your workouts and plan your day around it. But, the same approach doesn't apply to your diet plan, which in a way takes you two steps backward on your path to muscle gain.  The right pre-workout foods before your workout will help you work out intensely for a longer duration. The right snacks post your workout will quicken your recovery and aid in muscle gain. Know in detail what you should eat before going to the gym and what you should eat after your workout.

Eating right foods before and after your workout holds the key to your muscle gain and recovery. Prepping your body with adequate nutrition before you hit the gym makes all the difference to the intensity and duration of your exercise routine. Eating right foods about 1-2 hours prior to your workout will boost your workout performance, hydrate your body, preserve muscle mass and assist in speedy recovery. According to fitness experts, the best pre-workout bite should contain complex carbohydrate and protein. However, there may be variations based on individual needs.



Find out 5 best pre-workout meal ideas and when to have your pre-workout snack to get the maximum return on your workout time.   Ideally, you should eat your pre-workout meal one hour before you sweat it out in the gym

1.      Banana with mixed nuts and water

Grab a banana with a handful of mixed nuts and water. Bananas are a good source of carbs that help provide constant energy during a high-intensity workout. Along with carbs, bananas provide a good source of carbohydrates, manganese and potassium that goes a long way in preventing muscle cramps and is useful in increasing bone?s strength, endurance and wound healing.

A handful of nuts contain proteins and healthy fats that keep you satisfied without feeling too full. Besides, water is essential to hydrate your body both before and after a workout session.

2.      Oats with fresh fruit

Oats are good sources of proteins and fiber without adding too much of sodium to your diet. They are a source of complex carbohydrates and eating these good carbs before you work out releases carbohydrates into your bloodstream gradually. Oats also contain vitamin B that help convert carbohydrates into energy which can be used for the workout.

It is recommended to take at least one cup of oats at least an hour before you begin your workout. Adding fruits to a bowl of oats increases fluid content of your pre-workout snack and keeps you hydrated during the workout.

3.      Fruits and yogurt

Fruits are rich in complex carbohydrates whereas, Greek yogurt is packed with high-quality protein. Fruits provide healthy carbohydrates for instant energy during the workout and the proteins from yogurt break-up slowly and are used up later to prevent muscle damage.

4.       Sprouts and legumes

One of the most nutritious snacks you can have are sprouts and legumes. Sprouts are loaded with complex carbohydrates, vitamin K and C, proteins, minerals and fibers that release energy slowly over a longer period of time. This makes them a good choice for consumption at least 1-2 2 hours before the workout.

5.       Chickpeas with water

An incredibly easy pre-workout snack, chickpeas are rich in proteins. You just need to eat 1/4 to 1/3 of a cup of boiled chickpeas, seasoned with some lemon juice for taste. You can also try roasted channa in small quantity (say about a handful). Dehydration can lead to fatigue and a loss of coordination. According to the American Council on Exercise, exercise performance can decline if a person's hydration level decreases by just 2 percent during a workout. Exercisers should drink 500ml to 700ml of water an hour before workouts and drink 250ml of water every 15 minutes of exercise.


Do you wish to maximize your muscle gain and speed-up recovery? Pick the best foods post  workout to maximise your muscle gain and quicken recovery. After you have completed your strenuous gym session your muscles are like wrung-out sponges and are desperate to be re-nourished, especially after weight training, interval training, or endurance training lasting 45 minutes or more. Insulin sensitivity is at its highest and most if not all, food consumed at this time will be shunted directly into your muscles to replace what you have used during your workout. Fast-acting carbs and proteins consumed immediately after exercise will help ensure your muscles get exactly what they need to kick start the recovery process, replenish energy stores and ensure you are good to go and fully refueled when you next head out for a workout. That translates into improved recovery, reduced muscle soreness, stronger muscles, and better performance.

Find more about 5 best post-workout meal ideas and when to have your post workout food for maximum benefit. Your post workout meal should reach your system within two hours of your workout to improve nutrient absorption.   

1.      Avocados

A medium-size avocado contains about 3 grams of proteins and nine grams of fiber. Avocados are good sources of vitamin B which helps burn more fat by boosting body?s metabolism. It contains proteins and monounsaturated fat that helps rebuild your muscles after a workout.

2.      Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are one of the best sources of good carbohydrates and are consumed to augment the energy you need after a good workout. Though sweet potato is high in sugar content but the presence of fiber lowers its sugar?s effects considerably. Besides, the fiber content in sweet potatoes helps you feel full so that you don?t snack unnecessarily after your workout session.

Sweet potatoes contain carbohydrates and antioxidant nutrients like beta-carotene that protects your body against free radicals. It is a rich source of potassium and vitamin D that helps relieve muscle cramps and injuries due to workouts.

3.      Fruit salads

Fruits contain natural sugar and healthy carbs, highly crucial to rebuilding and re-energizing your body after the workout.  Fruit salad is one of the best and tastiest foods you can think of, after a hard workout routine.

Fruit salad contains different types of fruits (from pineapples to blueberries to peaches) and contains healthy carbohydrates needed to restore energy in the body. It contains a number of antioxidants that help ensure overall recovery.

4.      Cereal with milk

Cereal with milk is considered as a wonderful post-workout snack as it is a good source of carbohydrates, proteins, calcium and fiber that are vital for energy and muscle recovery. In fact, it replenishes most of the fluid needs during the workout.

5.      Protein shakes or healthy smoothies

Although real food is a viable option, if you are time-starved or do not have the inclination to rustle up a small meal, you can go for whey protein shakes or homemade healthy smoothies.  Target a 2:1 ratio of carbohydrate to protein and try to consume it either during or immediately after your cool-down.  

Remember, taking the right pre and post workout snacks can maximize your muscle gain and spell the difference between an average and awesome workout.