As an athlete you know, feeling tired just midway through the game, means that you are losing ground. What you eat and when you eat it can make a world of a difference in ensuring that you get maximum from your work out, while you are simply staying healthy or when you are in the middle of a very important game.
Below listed are a few tips, encompassing both exercise and eating habits, that you must incorporate in your lifestyle so as to lead a highly active life.
Give in to a Healthy Breakfast
If you work out in the morning, it is essential that you wake up at least two or three hours before the time you are supposed to work out. The energy you consumed during dinner, would already have been used up by the time you wake up in the morning, and your blood sugar levels will be low. If you do not eat before your workout in the morning, you will not be able to sustain your workout and will feel sluggish and lightheaded even.
If you have about an hour before you start exercising, consume a light breakfast, or simply drink a sports drink that will help elevate your blood sugar levels.
The ideal breakfast would consist of whole grain bread or cereals, fresh fruit juice, low fat milk and bananas.
Take Care of Portion Size
While it is important to eat well before a work out, it is also important to know how much is too much. Knowing how to time your meals and snacks with your workouts is important. So, pay attention to the pattern below and stay fit.
Large meals should be eaten three to four hours before your workout. Small meals would need two to three hours, and small snacks can be eaten about an hour before your work out.
If you eat too much before your work out, you will feel sluggish and may get stomach cramps or diarrhea. If you eat too little, you may not have enough energy to sustain your work out.
Some people need a quick pick up before an exercise, and a small snack can indeed do good for some people. You need to know how your system works to get the best out of the snacks that you eat. A quick snack that you could eat before your workout includes: yogurt, fresh fruits, smoothies or a whole grain bagel and granola bars.
Make Sure You Eat After Your Exercise
Your muscles will need to be repaired and will need some recovery after your workout. You also need to eat so that the stores of glycogen are replenished. You need to eat a meal that provides you with carbohydrates and protein at least within two hours of exercise. If you are not very hungry, a sports drink would be ideal.
The ideal post work out meal would comprise of: fruit and yogurt, a meat sandwich, string cheese and crackers, dried fruits and nuts and a meal that comprises of cooked vegetables, salad, meat and starch.
Water is very essential for the body, and making sure that your liquid intake helps you sustain your work out is equally important. The right amount of fluids, before, during and after your work outs can give you the best edge and protect you from dehydration.
While water is ideal, but if your work out continues for more than an hour, you should opt for a sports drink. Sports drinks help maintain the levels of electrolytes in your body and boost energy as they contain carbohydrates.
Listen to your body and pay attention to what it likes, what it dislikes, what it needs and what it can do without. Speaking with a Registered Holistic Nutritionist is important so that you can get the best out of your diet for sustained performance. A homeopath can also help you learn what natural remedies are out there for a healthy and active life.