If you’re looking for protein and energy before a workout, you have the option to try fitness supplements or other dietary powders to maximize the effects of your exercise. But, there are also certain foods that act as natural energy boosters that will help keep you satiated and awake for the duration of your workout. Keep reading to discover the top eight foods to replace your pre-workout.
- Peanut Butter with Toast
Having a spoonful of almond, peanut or other nut butter is a great way to get in some protein and magnesium before your workout. Pair it with a slice of whole-grain toast, which is rich in fiber, for a satisfying combination of carbs for energy and protein for strength and muscle growth.
Bananas are the perfect on-the-go snack for busy gym-goers looking to get in more potassium in their diet. Bananas also contain natural sugars and starch that will fuel your body for the entirety of your workout.
- Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are a great example of a natural pre-workout rich in vitamin A and complex carbohydrates. Sweet potatoes can be very filling, so they’re best consumed one to two hours before a workout.
A classic pre-workout staple, oatmeal never fails to keep you full and satisfied, especially if you’re going for a morning workout. Add chopped fruit for an added boost of sweetness and flavor.
- Brown rice with chicken
If you’re hitting the gym around lunchtime or dinner and need a solid meal to get you through your workout, brown rice with a healthy protein like chicken is a great option. Brown rice is a good source of fiber while the chicken adds protein and keeps you full. This meal is fairly low in calories and white chicken is a good source of lean meat for weight loss.
Eggs, specifically egg yolks, are filled with vital nutrients and are a great source of low-calorie protein. A slice of toast, avocado, and a scrambled or hard-boiled egg is a great pre or post-workout snack that will keep you full as you exercise.
- Protein smoothie or drink
Protein shakes and smoothies are popular pre-workout options that can be consumed quickly. Typically, smoothies are made of super-greens like kale and spinach. If you’re looking to add a pre-workout supplement, blending it into a protein shake is a great option. According to Legion Athletics, natural pre workout can enhance energy, mood, and focus in the gym while reducing fatigue.
Fat-free yogurt is an excellent source of protein and calcium before or after a workout. Make sure to choose yogurts without a lot of added sugar, making it easier on your digestive system and stomach. For added energy, add some fruit or sugar-free granola for crunch.
The key to a great workout is proper fueling beforehand!