We all want to do whatever possible in order to make the most out of life, and this involves hitting the gym to engage in physical activity to improve our bodies. However, many fail to receive the proper nutrition in order to make the most of their workouts. It can be easy to seek out convenience foods, they’re certainly not difficult to find. Improving your nutrition doesn’t have to be a chore. Follow these six nutrition tips for working out, and you can be on your way to getting the most out of every minute spent at the gym.
Nutrition Tips For Working Out
1. Adjust Your Eating Schedule
People are creatures of habit, and now’s the time to train your body on what time you eat. For starters, breakfast remains the best meal of the day for a commonly overlooked reason. Aside from the fact that it essentially “breaks your fast” after several hours of not eating, a high-protein breakfast will also increase your metabolism. You should also make it a habit to eat immediately after your workouts to ensure maximum recovery and improvement. The best post-workout meals include a combination of protein and carbohydrates. A few combinations to consider include:
- Grilled chicken and brown rice
- Greek yogurt
- Banana protein shake
- Scrambled eggs with vegetables
Here are some ideas for what to eat before your workout.
It’s been reported that 43 percent of adults drink less than four glasses of water per day. An alarming 25 percent say they don’t drink water at all. However, health authorities report that in order to perform optimally, adults need at least 64 ounces per day. Not only will this more easily allow your body to flush harmful toxins, but it also helps you make the most out of your next workout – your body will have plenty of fluids to rely on to replace what’s lost in sweat. Make it a habit to carry a water bottle with you on the go. Not only will you stay hydrated, but it can stave off junk food cravings too.
3. Don’t Skimp on Protein
We all need protein, but people who work out have an even bigger reason not to skimp. During a workout, muscles become damaged. It’s through the repair process that they become stronger and more toned. Some quality protein sources are:
- Whey protein
- Lean meat
- Greek Yogurt
- Cottage Cheese
4. Take The Right Supplements
As an athlete, you push the limits of your physical capabilities, and that’s what makes the many benefits of creatine and some other supplements so important. They provide a concentrated level of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that can be easily incorporated into your busy lifestyle. Just some to consider include:
- Whey- the best protein supplement
- Branched Chain Amino Acids- improve muscle recovery and immune system response
- Creatine Monohydrate – enhanced performance, better muscle strength, and increased power output
- Omega-3 fish oil – Essential fats for hormone production, immune system, and anti-inflammation.
- Multi-Vitamin/Mineral Supplement – ensure you’ve got enough minerals and vitamins to rebuild healthy cells.
5. Go Easy On The Drinking
After a long, stressful week, many of us enjoy going out and enjoying drinks with our best friends. While this can be a great way to unwind, it’s important to understand the hindrances this activity can have on your workout goals. There are a variety of physical setbacks drinking causes. For starters, alcohol contains empty calories, and these extra calories can really set you back. You should also consider the fact that alcohol negatively impacts protein synthesis.
We also understand how important hydration is in the gym. Since alcohol is especially taxing on the kidneys, dehydration often results. This is because the body directs water to the kidneys to aid in the metabolism of the alcohol. In order to take the most advantage of the energy-creating reactions your body has to offer, it’s best to keep drinking limited to a couple nights per week with no more than four alcoholic beverages consumed each week.
6. Tell Sugar You Need Some Space
Let’s face it. Sometimes we like to indulge in a hot, gooey piece of cake or decadent ice cream. In fact, if you completely eliminate treats from your diet, it can put you at a higher chance of falling off the wagon completely. However, it’s crucial that you keep sugary foods and drinks to a minimum as there are so many harmful side effects that can significantly impact your performance. Just some of the ways sugar can harm your health include:
- Blood glucose levels spike and plummet, leading to fatigue and cravings
- Risk of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes increases
- Decreases immune function
- Accelerates the signs of aging
- Tooth decay and gum disease
- Takes the place of important nutrients
If you’re seeking professional nutrition help, contact Basics and Beyond fitness & nutrition to set up a time to discuss your goals and your needs.
About the author: Ryan Blair’s 10 years experience as a personal trainer has given him a vast amount of knowledge and expertise within the health, fitness, and nutrition space. His love of writing, combined with his passion for helping others, guarantees the delivery of helpful and challenging information. He loves interacting with his readers and is dedicated to helping them live healthier, more fulfilling lives.