The answer is simple. You are unique and your fitness and nutrition plan should be tailored to your individual needs and goals. You may want your focus to be on fat loss or you may desire to gain muscle. Designing a nutrition plan for each of these outcomes will be different according to your unique physical makeup, body type, metabolism and athletic ability. The one-size-fits-all angle just doesn’t work.
Knowing when and how much to eat is just as important as knowing what to eat. Finding the right time to eat before and after working out and the proper combination of protein, healthy fats and carbohydrates is paramount. For example, If your plan includes eating a large pre-workout meal, you will need to have more time between eating and exercise. If you are limited on time, your meal should be small with less time between eating and your workout. Keeping an eye on how the timing and meal size affect you should be part of the overall plan. Playing around with food combos and timing, then adjusting as you go will help you to find the most optimal fit for your needs.
Post workout eating should combine both protein and carbs, within an hour of your workout. Just like our plans, everyone’s digestive system is different as well. Some need to eat immediately after their session, while others have to wait to build up an appetite. Choosing a high protein snack post workout is very beneficial.
When considering nutrition while designing your plan, we can’t forget hydration. Being strategic when consuming water before, during and after your workout is an essential factor in fitness and your daily life. There’s never a wrong time to hydrate, using water or your own hydration supplement, it’s up to you. Depending on the intensity of your workout and the amount you perspire during your session will determine the amount of fluid intake needed. Replenishing fluids lost is more than a good idea, it will keep you from developing health issues. Also, when you are not properly hydrated you will not perform as well.
If you have any questions on nutrition, please feel free to review our Frequently Asked Questions to learn more about eating before/after your workout and what is best for you. Contact us for more information.