3 Things to Avoid Pre Workout
Based on recent research, personal knowledge and education, and client experiences, this is a list of the top 3 things that you could and probably should avoid prior to a heavy workout. The pre-workout window (around 1-2 hours) is extremely important when you are serious into training. It's important because whatever happens in this window could potentially make or break your session, whether it's mindset, work distractions, or your nutrition. Everyone is different when it comes to their pre-workout nutrition, but these highlighted recommendations could apply to the majority of athletes.
Heavy or Dense Meats
Meat such as steak, bison and buffalo are examples of things I would not want to eat just before training. Usually these types of meat are quite dense (versus ones like chicken or even egg whites) which means they will sit in your stomach for long periods of time as they try to breakdown and digest. Think of meats that are high fat contents, and I'll outline more about that below. As a result you may find that there's a feeling of discomfort within your abdomen as your body struggles to break the food down enough, as you train. Reserve meat like this for later in the day after you've trained or much earlier on.
I'm absolutely pro carbohydrates in the pre-workout window for myself and most of my clients, but there usually are certain types of carbs you want to enjoy and/or avoid during this timeframe, You don't want to be consuming excessive amounts because you're going to feel very bloated, heavy and potentially lethargic. What is excessive for one person to the next will differ, however I would say you know what a "normal" portion is to your lifestyle, habits and needs. Don't try and force-feed carbs just before you train.
Excessive Amounts Of Fat
I already touched on this above with dense meats (containing high fats contents). You don't need to necessarily avoid fat in your pre-workout meal but if you're having a balanced meal with carbs and protein before you train you don't want to consume too much fat. If you're on a very low carb diet (keto) then potentially yes you will have more fats in the pre-workout meal than someone who's having carbs at this time. Fats both pre and post workout don't really benefit your performance, so saving your fats for other times of the day would be most optimal and ideal.
The biggest takeaway from above is that you don't want to be feeling too full and having the food sit in your stomach during your session. You want to fuel your body with the nutrients that it needs for optimal performance, but also ones that are easy to digest and not hard on your system.
When you're ready to take the guesswork out of your nutrition and training, we're here for you. Our coaches at Courtney For Life meet you where you are in life and help you find your magic protocols to meet your goals. See our coaching options and complete the inquiry form at courtneyforlife.com/coaching
There is more information regarding nutrient timing that I cover in my first edition eBook; check it out at www.courtneyforlife.com/shop