Exercise beginners have been offered a checklist detailing what they should always aim to consume when it comes to pre-workout nutrition. Experts at health and fitness site have revealed the food types to include in a pre-exercise meal, as well as tips regarding proper hydration and digestion.
Fuelling your body with the correct nutrients prior to exercise will give you the energy and strength you need to perform at your best.
Exercising on an empty stomach is generally not advisable, as you’ll lack the energy you need from carbohydrates to achieve your peak performance.
As well as handling pre-workout nutrition correctly, you should try to keep the portion size appropriate to your fitness goals.
A spokesperson for said: “What you eat before a workout is incredibly important. Look at your body as you would any other machine, like a car for example. You wouldn’t attempt a non-stop 100-mile journey with just 20-miles in the tank, would you?
“Failing to do so can make you dizzy, lightheaded, nauseated or lethargic, and it can also make you more likely to injure yourself.
“Similarly, re-fuelling after exercise gives your body what it needs to recover from the exertion and build bigger, stronger muscles.
“If you’re mindful of what you eat before and after exercising, this will maximise the benefits of all your hard work at the gym, so try and tick off each of these six points.”
Six Step Workout Nutrition Checklist For Exercise Beginners
Carbs = energy. When we eat them, they break down into glucose, enter our muscle cells, and give us fuel to exercise at our maximum capacity. If you’re strapped for glucose during your workout, you’ll likely feel weak, tired, and tempted to call it quits.
When we do strength training exercises, like weight lifting, we create small tears in our muscle fibres. When you rest, your body repairs those microtears, building up your muscles bigger and stronger than they were before—and it needs protein to do so. But that doesn’t mean you want to devour a huge burger before a workout. Instead, go for sources of protein that are easily digestible, and don’t eat too much, so you don’t get an upset stomach halfway through.
3. Acetylcholine and high dopamine
Every state of mind and emotion is mirrored by a chemical. During most training sessions focus and drive are the name of the game, which means you want high acetylcholine and dopamine levels. The best foods to achieve this are red meat and nuts. Eggs, even though they are high in acetylcholine supporting nutrients, digest rather quickly so might not be the best option.
The amount of fat you choose to consume before you exercise is highly dependent on when you’re eating and your type of workout. Fat takes longer to digest than carbs and protein, so fat provides a longer stream of energy. If you’re eating a pre-workout meal at least two hours before a workout, you’ll likely want to include some source of fat. That’s also the case if you’ll be exercising at a moderate-to-low intensity for an extended period of time (i.e. walking, hiking, biking for 1-3 hours).
Whatever you eat before a workout, you need to give your body enough time to digest it before exerting yourself. The ideal time to eat is between 30 minutes to three hours before your workout. That way you’re not still digesting when you hit the gym floor, but you haven’t gone and used up all those helpful calories yet.
Obviously, your body should be hydrated all of the time, but it’s particularly important to make sure you’re hydrated before and during exercise. A good place to start is drinking about two cups of water 2-3 hours before exercise and one cup of water 10 to 20 minutes before working out. The goal here is to minimize dehydration – which can cause low energy and muscle cramps – without drinking too much.
Why it could be time stop dieting & consider what you consume…
We’ve tried them all haven’t we? Atkins, Paleo, Keto and if you’re a certain age then maybe the Cabbage Soup Diet. But do any of them keep weight off in the long term? In most cases, the answer is sadly, no. They may provide a short-term fix, but in the longer term the scales will slowly creep back up again.
In fact, evidence shows that dieting is linked with a higher risk of gaining weight. Many of you will know from bitter experience that you go on a diet, you lose some weight, you don’t feel great as you’re denying yourself certain food groups, or foods you love and then when you return to your normal way of eating, the pounds creep back on again.
This is why we need to reframe how we see a ‘diet’. When you look the word ‘diet’ up in the dictionary, the first meaning is ‘The food and drink we consume on a daily basis’ and the second meaning is ‘a limited amount of food we eat for medical reasons or to lose weight’. If we were to focus on the first meaning and embark on a diet that is for life and which provides us with all the nutrients we need to thrive then we’d have much less need to focus on the second meaning.
A great way to assess if your current way of eating is the best one for you, is to ask yourself if you’d be content eating the way you do now in two years’ time? if the answer is no, then it’s time to make some changes and discover your diet for life.
We also mustn’t forget that one size won’t fit all when it comes to a diet for life. We don’t all respond in the same way to the calories we consume and we don’t all undertake the same amount of daily movement or have the same metabolism. What works for one person may not work for another and this is why taking an individualised approach works much better.
It’s also important to not look at one factor in isolation, for example, stress, sleep and movement all impact upon our weight and our energy and if we only look at what we are eating then we may not achieve our goals as quickly.
If you’d like start your journey towards a diet for life, then why not book one of my 30-minute Vitality Review Consultations? We can talk about your health goals and discuss some tips for changing your diet and lifestyle so that you can find an energetic, healthy version of you who can thrive in life.
Luton and Milton Keynes David Lloyd reopen for outdoor fitness
With their large open air spaces, David Lloyd Clubs is in a unique position to be able to offer an extensive programme of much-needed group exercise, tennis and swimming for all the family at its clubs across England.
The Covid-19 pandemic has proven just how important our physical and mental wellbeing is, and after the last 12 months of lockdowns, David Lloyd Clubs is delighted to finally reopen to help the nation to get motivated and inspired to reset their habits, as well as benefit from the sense of community and seeing other members after many months of isolation.
The clubs’ open air spaces will allow members to safely take part in a range of outdoor activities, all strictly following Government guidelines, offering activities which improve strength, flexibility, mobility and support a healthy immune system.
There will be an extensive programme of up to 85 group exercise classes a week – from yoga, Pilates, group cycling classes and bootcamp style workouts, along with some other David Lloyd Clubs favourites including Battlebox and Blaze, all led by expert instructors. The majority of outdoor classes will take place under open sided marquees and giant umbrellas to shelter members from the elements.
Personal trainers will also be available for those looking for added motivation after lockdown. In addition, outdoor tennis will be open for one-to-one coaching, singles and doubles play. The heated outdoor swimming pools will be open every day where available.
The Group awaits confirmation that it can reopen its indoor facilities as part of the next stage of the roadmap on 12th April, alongside non-essential retail.
As the fitness and health industry makes its first steps to reopening after Lockdown 3, it is also calling on the Government for greater financial support, with increased rates relief for fitness businesses plus reduced VAT similar to that offered to the hospitality industry, so that this important sector, which has been closed for around nine months in the last year, can begin its recovery from this devastating crisis.
Glenn Earlam, CEO David Lloyd Clubs commented: “We’re delighted to be able to reopen for outdoor exercise. Our outdoor clubs in Scotland and Wales have proved to be very popular and our members have told us how much they have missed their clubs in England so we know that this move will mean a lot to them.
We’ve shown that we can operate safely, but despite this, fitness and leisure centres have been closed for the best part of nine months in the last year. With very little income in the last year, we desperately need more financial support from the Government. Whilst we appreciate the assistance that we have received while we have been closed, the Government’s budget earlier this month offered our industry little comfort for the future.
Our sector will play an important part in the nation’s recovery from the pandemic. These last 12 months have taught us all to prioritise our health, and gyms have an essential role to play in getting the nation back on its feet. Exercise strengthens the immune system, protecting against viruses such as flu and Covid-19 and helps combat obesity and diabetes, which are significant mortality factors.
Luton and Milton Keynes David Lloyd reopen for outdoor fitness
David Lloyd Luton
Located on Capability Green Business Park just off the M1, David Lloyd Luton is a boutique fitness destination for the whole family
910 Capability Green,
Luton LU1 3LU
David Lloyd Milton Keynes
Set in a leafy spot between Campbell Park and Willen Lake, David Lloyd Milton Keynes is far more than just a health club.
Livingstone Dr, Newlands,
Milton Keynes MK15 0DL
Local business launch “Brew for a Hero” campaign for NHS & key workers
Harpenden based Twist Teas have announced their “Brew for a Hero” campaign is back! Launched to support and boost morale for NHS staff and key workers, the Brew for a Hero” campaign gives people a chance to show their appreciation for all the heroes from all walks of life during the current pandemic. This could be anyone – local postal workers, refuse collectors and cleaners, emergency services and health care staff, teachers and chefs, community groups and volunteers.
You can participate in the “Brew for a Hero” by nominating a NHS or key workers hero you know. Nominate your hero and give them a chance to win one of Twist Teas Rainbow inspired tea caddies. If you know a key worker, that you would like to surprise with a personalised Rainbow Caddy of tea, simply email your nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a brief reason, as to why they deserve a little treat. Twist Teas will again be tasked with the difficult job of picking winners, to be announced on the 31st of January.
Twist Teas will also be making caddies available to purchase via their website with profits going to NHS Charities. More information about Twist Teas can be found in our interview with founders, mother and daughter duo Nicky Kavanaugh & Claire Ayers.
Special offer from our sponsor Sparky Friend
If you only saved £10/week that’s £500 of FREE food making it a real no brainer!