The right foods before and after a workout.

We have all heard millions of times that 30% of success is training, and as much as 70% is diet. how can we combine this to make sense? What to eat before and after exercise in order to achieve the best results?

One of the most common questions I get is what to eat before and after training. No wonder – your consciousness is growing and you want to improve both your diet and exercise in order to achieve better results and live even more healthily. It’s cool!
Before we start, I wrote this article about information confirmed by world health and sports institutions. You won’t find any revolutionary theories in this article, only what is nowadays considered a determinant – or at least a confirmed determinant.


In order to understand why you should eat like this and not differently, and that this is not an idea, but a thing determined by the action of our body, a short introduction – I promise I won’t bring you any more!
Carbohydrates, proteins and fats are macro-ingredients that we need to take from food in order for our body to function at all. If you are completely alien to this topic, have a look at this entry – Proteins, fats and carbohydrates – what is it all?

Carbohydrates are our main source of energy. After eating “coal”, our body transforms it and stores it with glycogen in the muscles and liver. The glycogen in the muscles is our duracell, drive and battery during exercise.

Proteins, on the other hand, as you probably remember from biology, are a building material. They take part in the regeneration and construction of new cells. So they are also important for the active person – it is thanks to them that our muscles can regenerate, strengthen or grow (but remember that just increasing the amount of protein in the diet does not cause muscle growth – this is myta).

Fats are such an unwanted child – everyone considers them to be something bad, while they are hellishly important! Healthy fats are involved in some of the processes associated with tissue hormones, they are the building material of cell membranes, and can also be a source of energy for the body.
We already know everything. So now the answer to the question that everyone is waiting for.


It is worth starting with the fact that the pre-training meal should be eaten about 3-4 hours before the exercises. This will allow us to avoid stomach sensations, but it will also give our body time to grasp what it ate a moment ago and to absorb nutrients accordingly. Only then will the pre-training meal be used well.

In addition, it is believed that people who train intensively should also eat a small carbohydrate or carbohydrate/protein snack 1-2 hours before training. However, this is rather true for people practicing competitive sports.

In sports nutrition it is recommended to eat a balanced meal before training – that is, a meal containing both carbohydrates and protein, as well as fats. Many people say that you can afford a little more carbohydrates during this time – and most of all. Some sources say that fats do not play a major role in this meal – firstly, they slow down the digestion process, and secondly, carbohydrates should form the core of this meal.

However, I know that many people do not say anything like ‘eat charcoal, protein and fat’, so let’s go to the examples:

What to eat before training?

⦁ sandwiches made of rye or wholemeal flour greased with crushed avocado with garlic, rocket and boiled egg;
⦁ pancakes made of wholemeal flour with peanut butter
⦁ fries made from yams with roasted salmon and vegetables
⦁ rice with vegetables and chicken, with added olive oil or oil-based sauce
⦁ roasted potatoes with ground turkey pulp (steamed) with vegetables and e.g. avocados
⦁ tortillas with chicken and vegetables or fish, e.g. salmon and vegetables

For vegetarians: analogically, where there is meat, you can use products containing a lot of protein.


When we are after physical activity, many people think it’s the moment when they can open a beer, put in all the chocolate or crisps, because “after all, I deserved”. Regardless of how slimming or taking care of one’s silhouette makes it impossible, it is simply unhealthy. Our body now needs good quality products to help it regenerate after workout.

In a post-workout meal, a combination of protein+ carbohydrates is recommended. This mixture will help to regenerate after training and replenish muscle glycogen reserves.

Eating after training:
⦁ protein-carbohydrate cocktail – e.g. banana mixed with yoghurt or milk;
⦁ wholemeal or rye sandwiches with egg/curd cheese/hair/chicken chicken/bean paste/ chickpeas paste
⦁ rice with vegetables and meat – chicken, turkey, beef
⦁ wholegrain pasta with meat and vegetable sauce
⦁ wholegrain pasta with spinach, mozzarella, garlic.
⦁ snack which contains dates and some source of protein.


Different sources provide different versions of how much time after training we should eat our post-workout meal. I think that the optimal time will be 0-1.5 hours after training. This is more or less what the time looks like in various scientific studies after averaging it.

All the above mentioned meals are, of course, examples. Experiment, try – you don’t have to stick to rigid rules. What’s more, nothing will happen if you eat everything completely different from time to time. ????

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