Whether it's a cardio, toning, HIIT or strength training workout, you need to fuel your body properly before and after the exercise.
Below I have laid out the important elements of maximizing your pre-filling and post-replenishing routine. In addition, there are several snack suggestions tailored to certain activities to optimize the benefits from your sweat sesh*.
What you eat before (and if needed, during) your workout is crucial for fueling the workout itself and maximizing your performance throughout.
60-90 minutes pre-workout, have a solid, balanced meal OR
30-0 minutes pre-workout (and/or sipped throughout the workout), have a liquid or easily digested meal
Exercise: Cardio (Running, cycling, dancing, kickboxing): Eat easy to digest snacks and hydrate before then hydrate with protein and carbohydrates afterwards.
Before Cardio: Medium piece of fruit + drizzle of honey
After Cardio: 3/4 cup of chocolate milk + small banana
Exercise: HIIT (circuit training/ interval workout): Eat simple carbs to get your engine revving before and protein later for muscle recovery.
Before HIIT Classes: 1 slice whole grain bread spread with 1 tbsp. natural fruit preserves.
After HIIT Classes: 1/2 english muffin, 2tbsp avocado, 3 tbsp. shredded cheese.
Exercise: Toning (Barre, Pilates, Yoga-flow, vinyassa): Eat balanced snacks with carbohydrates, protein and fat to help sustain energy all day.
Before Toning: 1 small piece of fruit + handful of raw, unsalted nuts
After Toning: 1/3 cup of hummus + few carrot sticks
Exercise: Strength Training (Kettlebells, circuit, pump/lifting class): Eat enough protein to prevent muscle breakdown and allows muscle to recover.
Before Toning: 1 cup edamame (out of shell)
After Toning: 1 cup nonfat plain yogurt + 1/4 cup berries on top