Should You or Shouldn’t You Eat Right Before or After Exercise
I am back with one more blog in this series of posts. I have shared with you the best time of day to workout, how to exercise so you lose the most amount of weight, the fallacies of using products to help you lose more weight while you sleep, and the most effective exercise for weight loss.
If you have not read the previous posts, I strongly recommend that you do. They are loaded with great goodies for successful weight loss.
Today, I want to share with you the best time to eat for effective weight loss. There are many myths out there about when to eat.
Myth: You should or shouldn’t eat right before or after exercise.
Fact: There are not any rules about when to eat, other than listening to your body. Unless you are an athlete, there is not a right or wrong time to eat.
I truly struggled with my weight loss because of the misconceptions about when to eat. I was once told that I had to eat before my workout. So, of course I did this. When I did I was unable to finish my workout because of stomach cramps and nausea.
That was not working for me so I looked for more information. I then found an article that said I should eat right after my workout. This worked much better for me and I was able to complete my workout. However, I did not feel well after eating. I still got a stomachache and nausea. There were even times that the food just did not look good at all.
I was on my own then. I had to find out what worked best for me. This is what you need to do as well.
I began trying different times throughout the day. What truly ended up working for me, and still works for me today is if I eat a small bowl of oatmeal an hour before I exercise. Or, I can eat a small granola bar or a handful of nuts about 15 minutes before I exercise if I am only doing a short workout. About half an hour after my workout I need a good sized portion of protein and carbohydrates. I will eat my large breakfast, or even lunch at this time so that I get them and add in a lot of vegetables.
Like I said, this is what works for me. What works for you may be different. I highly recommend trying a few different times and listening to your body. It will tell you what it needs.
As a way to help you decide where to start, here are bits of advice from authorities and other articles that provide suggestions. You may find one that works for you, or you may need to create your own.
- Wait two hours after a large meal
- Wait 20 minutes after exercising
- Eat 30 minutes before a morning workout
- Eat within 2 hours of your workout
- Exercise on an empty stomach in the morning (this does not burn more fat, but you may find it easier on your stomach)
- Enjoy a low fat, complex-carb meal or snack 1-4 hours before exercise
- One hour before you exercise eat .45 gm of carbs per pound of body weight.
None of these tips are better than the others. When it comes to weight loss there is not a “one size fits all” rule. You need to listen to your body and discover what works best for you and your exercise routine.
Some tips that indicate that you are eating too close to your workout:
- Sick to your stomach
- Severe cramps
Some tips that indicate you are eating too far away from your workout:
- Unable to complete your workout
- Severe cramps
- Too difficult to maneuver
One more caveat to this type of experiment…if you are in an extended workout that lasts longer than 30 minutes, you may find that eating a handful of nuts or drinking 8 ounces of an electrolyte filled drink in the middle will be beneficial to your workout.
Always eat a balanced diet and listen to your body. You will know when and what you need to eat to get through your workouts. If you want help determining the best time for you to eat, schedule your complimentary “Help me Out” call today.