Nutrition Strategies for Pre and Post Exercise
Your nutrition choices are driven by frequency, intensity, duration, and the types of training you are doing. The choices you make affect your performance and recovery between sessions. It’s ideal to eat something before your workout sessions to get the most out of them, especially as a triathlete because there may be days with more than one workout. Since it’s the middle of prime race season, recovery between workouts can make all the difference.
Tips for Pre-Workout Nutrition:
- Try to eat 2 hours beforehand for larger meals
- Oatmeal, fruit, nuts
- Large protein smoothie
- Eggs, veggies, toast
- Yogurt, fruit, granola
- If eating within 2 hrs try for a smaller meal/snack
- Banana/nut butter
- Smaller smoothie w protein
- Crackers/nut butter
- Hard boiled egg/fruit
- Peaches/cottage cheese
- Applesauce/protein powder
- Hydration is even more important than fuel, especially in the well-trained athlete. That said, make sure you are doing what’s needed to stay hydrated and perform at your best.
Tips for Post-Workout Nutrition:
Post workout nutrition is key for your recovery and will help to set you up for your next workout (that day, or even the next). If your workout is high intensity you may benefit from liquid nutrition like a recovery drink or your own homemade smoothie. Here are some other examples of post-workout meals:
- Plain Greek yogurt, berries, honey
- Sweet potato with egg
- Tuna salad with whole grain crackers
- Whole grain tortilla with eggs, salsa, avocado
- Rice, veggies, chicken
For shorter workouts or workouts that are less intense, you likely can wait until your next meal to eat. Always remember to stay hydrated though.
Train smart and fuel smarter. As the saying goes, there’s no such thing as overtraining, just under recovered.
Megan Dopp is D3’s go-to nutritionist. She helps athletes orient their nutrition to support their training and racing. She specializes in athletes, wellness and is passionate about getting to the root cause of specific problems. Meg is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and a Certified Functional Medicine Practitioner with over 14 years of experience.