Deciding whether to have breakfast before the gym or not has been a consistent topic for debate, but new research has shown that skipping breakfast could actually hinder your progress in the gym. Scientists found that those who ate before the gym felt fuller for longer, had lower levels of hunger and desire to eat.
It can also help your overall digestion, and allows you to burn carbs at a much faster rate during exercise. It’s a complete no brainer! Nutritionist at Natures Plus, Michela Vagnini offers her advice to help you create your perfect pre-gym brekkie…
1. Light Exercise
If you are going for a light jog or light exercise especially for weight loss, you don’t need to carb-load. Ideally, you should try to eat a complete meal containing carbs, protein and fat 2-3 hours before you exercise.
Some meal suggestions include:
- Lentil Pasta with mixed vegetable sauce and grated cheese
- Quinoa with mixed vegetables, avocados and feta cheese
- Chicken with sweet potatoes, spinach, watercress and mixed nuts/seeds
- Grilled or baked fish with olives and cauliflower
In some cases, it can be quite difficult to eat hours before a workout, especially when balancing work life. Therefore, remember that the sooner you eat, the smaller and simpler the meal should be to prevent any stomach discomfort.
Some smaller meal suggestions include:
- Full fat organic yogurt with chia seeds and berries
- Sliced apple with nut butter
- Keto Bars
2. Long Distance Running & Lifting Weights
This is where those extra carbs come in handy! The most important thing to remember when we talk about carbs is that not all carbs are created equal. Throughout the day, you should consume carbs with a low glycaemic impact; these types of carb will provide sustained energy rather than spiking your blood sugar. Aim to eat an hour before your workout.
- Whole carbohydrates
- Whole grains (quinoa and brown rice)
- Non-starchy vegetables
- Lean protein
- Healthy Fats
3. Ketogenic Diet and Workout
This particular diet is a high fat (75%), moderate protein (15%) and low carb (10%) diet proven to be effective and with long lasting effect for weight loss and general wellbeing. If you follow this particular diet, you could eat meals such as steamed or grilled salmon with cashew, olives and mixed green vegetables. Salmon can be replaced with chicken, eggs or steak.