As a fitness junkie, I keep an eye out to make sure I am properly fueling my body before and after I work out. In fact, some of my top favorites are pretty common foods found in fridges and cupboards that are both healthy and help enhance my gym performance by keeping me fueled and full. When working out, it’s important to focus on a good combination of carbs, protein and healthy fats to help improve energy and endurance. Check out these three foods that help give my work out a boost.
If you want to enhance your gym performance, milk is an ideal choice. Packed with protein and often fortified with nutrients such as calcium and vitamin D, this choice will give you the energy you need to push through your workout! Don’t want to do dairy? No problem. Soy milk has almost the same amount of protein as regular milk and is packed with good-for-you nutrients like vitamin A and potassium. If you aren’t crazy about plain milk, try out chocolate milk.
Oats are a great source of carbohydrates, whole grains and soluble fiber to give you the energy you need to work out. Bonus- the fiber in oats can help keep you full for longer so you don’t hear stomach rumbles while you complete a set of crunches. Oats are also a source of B vitamins and iron. Try oatmeal with toppings such as nuts or berries, add oats to breakfast muffins or incorporate oats into your smoothie. Depending on your preference, whole grain cereals with oats are also a great option to get fiber in the diet and come in several different types and flavors.
Nuts are an awesome way to get some healthy fats (both mono- and polyunsaturated!) and protein before you gear up for your workout and for post-workout recovery as well. Nuts also contain a variety of micronutrients including folate, vitamin E, magnesium and potassium. There are various kinds, such as almonds, walnuts, pistachios, cashews and more, so you’ll never get bored!
Food and fitness go hand in hand, so if you are trying to improve your performance in the gym, a good place to start is your diet. You could make the perfect pre- or post-workout snack by combining all three of these foods into a hearty bowl of oatmeal or use them as part of a nutrient-packed breakfast muffin or bar. Regardless of what specific foods you end up choosing, if you make sure to get a good mix of carbs, protein and healthy fats, your workout regimen will thank you.