Carbohydrates as the Ideal Pre-Workout Diet

The whirring, clanking and squeaking of exercise treadmills, weights, benches, pulleys and cables are a common sight and sound in the metropolises and smaller cities and towns too. Gyms are open through the day, making it easy for individuals to follow a convenient exercise schedule. But these anytime-of-the-day exercise schedules also bring into focus pre exercise foods and snacks.

A big majority of routine exercise enthusiasts know about foods to be eaten before and after workouts, but there is also a big majority who are ignorant of these facts. Many believe that for the body to use its fat reserves, it is necessary to exercise on an empty stomach so that the body is pushed to use the excess fat reserves as energy backup. But this is a wrong notion again since exercising one’s body calls for energy and a stomach that is not hungry and craving for food.

Snacking on a carbohydrate rich snack approximately two hours prior to working out ensures increased energy; better strength and increased endurance power of the muscles, all making for a better workout schedule and more calories burnt and consequently more fat burnt during workout.

Pre-workout Food Types:

When we talk of best foods that can be eaten prior to working out, it is also necessary to understand that the snack should one with carbohydrates and surely fat free. Carbohydrates are easily digestible and easier on the stomach and give the body the fuel needed to get through the workout without suffering hunger pangs and feeling low on energy. Fats on the other hand cause the body to become heavy as they are not easily digested and lethargy sets in causing problems when exercising. Eating high fiber foods can cause gas and indigestion leading to stomach cramps and discomfort while exercising, so they are best avoided. A small amount of protein can be added to the snack to keep away hunger pangs for an extended period. Drinking a juice or a shake before exercising also works well because it keeps the individual feeling light and more energetic and doesn’t weigh on the stomach.

Pre-workout Foods:

Fruit and vegetable juices like orange, sweet lime, carrot, beetroot, etc are very edible and easily digested. Cereals with milk, toast, chicken on brown breads, and yoghurt with fruits like strawberries, bananas; fresh fruits like watermelon, oranges, grapes, etc are ideal pre-workout foods. Foods and snacks apart, energy drinks, smoothies, shakes, etc and energy bars which are got easily in stores are also a much favored part of an ideal pre-exercise diet plan. Drinking water before working out and even sipping water during the workout helps to take care of problems like dehydration and exhaustion, so water is a very important part of the pre-workout diet plan.

The smaller snacks can be had 2 hours before working out, but a larger full meal calls for an interval of 4 to 5 hours before working out.


In conclusion, though, one must also remember the fact that every body type is different and reacts to foods differently. So it is necessary to understand this and decide what works best for you and chart your before workout diet plan accordingly.

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