Eat Like an Olympic Star for Energy + Nutrition
1. Add a little java juice. Here’s a performance-enhancing drug that’s both legal and safe to use: caffeine. A cup or two of coffee an hour before your workout can help you exercise a little harder or a little longer before fatigue sets in. More gain, less pain?
2. Don’t exercise on empty. If it’s been more than four or five hours since your previous meal, you might want to top off your energy stores before hitting the trail. Avoid foods that are high in protein, fat, or fiber right before a workout. They tend to sit in the stomach and require more digestive steps to convert into muscle energy. To maximize both your comfort and performance, choose pre-workout foods that are quickly digested and absorbed, such as fruit, fruit juice, yogurt, or half of a bagel or an English muffin.
3. Refuel for the next workout. Try to have a small meal or snack within 30 to 60 minutes of finishing your workout. During this window of time, your body is uniquely primed to absorb nutrients and put them to work rebuilding and recharging spent muscles. Take advantage of this opportunity and you’ll reap the benefits at your next workout! The ideal post-workout snack contains about two–three times as much carbohydrate as protein. No need to get out the calculator, though. Reach for cottage cheese and fruit, a turkey sandwich, or a bowl of steamed edamame.
Here are some recipe ideas to get you up and running.
Lemon pepper gives this dip a kick, and almost any vegetables will work.
You’ll want to make this simple dish even when you’re not “in training” for a big game.
Lemon yogurt and the taste of bananas make this dish kid-friendly and healthy.
Luscious fruit — use whatever’s fresh at your summer farmstand — and yogurt make this “snack” irresisible.
Make like an Olympic star with these healthy, lo-cal snacks!