There are many misconceptions involving eating meals before a workout.
While exercising on an empty stomach can help to jump-start your metabolism, continuously skimping on meals can actually sabotage progress.
As long as you eat a healthy meal that allows you to feel satisfied and not stuffed, there is no need to wait any set period of time to eat before weight training.
While doing the correct strength training exercise routine will help to get your body in shape quickly, consuming the right foods at intervals throughout the day will keep your body in top-tip shape.
Far too many budding athletes confuse healthy diet plans with starvation, so be sure to eat an energy-rich meal before every workout routine.
Wait Time Between Weight Training and Meals
In all actuality, you should keep a few snacks around for consumption during strenuous workout routines. Replenishing your energy stores during a workout session will give you the boost you need to burn even more calories.
Remember that your body continues to burn off calories even while sitting or standing. If you do not supply your body with an adequate amount of calories from fat, protein, and carbohydrates, your workout sessions will be in vain.
If you have noticed that despite engaging in vigorous weight training sessions your body is not responding, take a closer look at what you are eating.
One of the most important foods you should eat when strength training is protein. Proteins will repair your muscles, give your body more ‘high-octane’ energy, and generally allow you to workout harder and for longer periods of time.
What and how much should I eat when weight training?
While eating well-balanced meals is ideal, it is not always practical for people in certain lifestyles. Having a demanding work schedule can cause you to skip meals altogether if you are not careful.
Skipping meals can send your body into starvation mode, which can cause your body to temporarily shut down and cling to its resources.
The best meals to eat prior to working out should be carbohydrate-rich. This is not to say that you should consume extra large portions of food before you exercise, as you should plan to eat in conjunction with how intense your workout will be.
A low paced workout doesn’t warrant eating a big meal, but 90 minutes of intense cardio requires you to eat before, during, and after your session.
Another reason some people think eating before weight training should be avoided is because they fear developing muscle cramps. While there is some truth to this, a number of extreme factors would have to be in place for you to get a cramp during a weight training session.
- First, you would have to eat a particularly heavy meal just before working out in order to induce cramps
- Second, it is much more difficult to feel stuffed when you eat vegetables and fruits, so when a cramp develops it is usually because an unhealthy meal was eaten
What should I do after weight training?
Eating a good amount of food before working out is crucial, but eating directly after exercise can help to burn fat and keep your muscles tight and toned.
After a good workout, your body will become much more efficient at burning fat and sending food enzymes to the proper channels.
In other words, when you eat a healthy meal no later than 45 minutes after exercising you can lose weight more easily and prevent sore muscles more efficiently.
Many weight trainers miss out on this post-workout opportunity because they think eating less will give them better results.
Following an intense workout session, your body literally becomes an energy burning machine, but only for a very short period of time.
Even if you don’t feel particularly hungry, you can still consume a small portion of food after exercising and reap the benefits. Eat a healthy but protein-rich meal in the 45 minutes after a workout session to get the most out of your body’s heightened state.
As long as you balance the amount of energy that you burn with the amount of food you take in, you will continue to burn fat and build muscle.
You may have to try out different meal plans before you find the right fit, but as long as you keep your body properly fueled, you will be guaranteed results in the meantime.
It is important to track not only your dietary goals but your weight training goals, as well. Get started today with our Pro annual plan to track your daily victories with our advanced stats and keep you motivated and focused.