Let's Pre-Game

-Are you fueling enough?-

· Food

Dear Reader,

If you love a morning workout, you will want to keep reading this article. It has been scientifically proven that morning workouts are the best because you are typically setting yourself up for a healthy domino effect throughout the day. Its also easier to be consistent as you won't have any distractions such as evening plans, commuting, late nights in the office among others. If you don't like a busy gym, morning hours are better because most people tend to hit the gym after work. Even if the gym gets busy in the morning, most people are in a hurry to get to the office so nobody will be clinging to a machine or starting up small talk.

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So with that said, I thought to give you some pre- workout meals/ snacks that will fuel you for your morning sessions. A good rule of thumb is to snack between 15-20 minutes before a workout. Also, remember that the less time you have before your workout, the smaller your meal or snack should be. - Major Key Alert

Oats and Banana

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Eating oatmeal about an hour before your workout will keep you full, even when you are burning calories. You'll be energised all through your workout.

Freshly Squeezed Juice (Orange, Apple, Passion, Green Juice)

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Having freshly squeezed juice 30 minutes before your workout will give you an energy boost from the natural sugars and complex carbohydrates in the fruits. Grab a quick cold one before hitting your circuit class. You can make your own or buy from healthy spots like Absolute Juice, Pulp & Zest or Zucchini.

Banana with Natural Peanut Butter (1 Tablespoon)

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Yes, I do love bananas, but for good reason! If you are not a big breakfast person but you know you'll be working out for more than an hour, eat a banana smeared with peanut butter -- preferably about 15 minutes before you exercise. This combination gives you a healthy balance of lean protein and fiber to stabilize blood sugar and curbs any sweet cravings you might have after. *Remember to limit your nut butter to 1-2 table spoons because it's high in calories ;)*

Tripple Berry Shake

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Blend a handful of strawberries, raspberries & blueberries, 1 table spoon of honey, 1/2 cup coconut milk or Greek Yogurt and a table spoon of almond butter. You can also add a scoop of vanilla protein shake for that extra energy boost. Slurp!

Protein Bars

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These life savers have the advantage of convenience. They are small and can be consumed quickly by active people or professionals who are super busy. They give you steady energy during your workout. Please note, you will not benefit from protein bars if you choose the wrong ones. Consuming high-calorie meal-replacement bars as a snack can lead to weight gain..so pick wisely. The options above work for me but I do limit my intake to once- twice a week.

Coconut Water

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A good friend recently introduced me to this and I must say, it is super healthy. Coconut water is an easily digestible carbohydrate that gives your body energy for the workout ahead; it also helps with muscle recovery after a workout. You can have it straight with ice cubes, or use it to blend a smoothie. Look for natural, unsweetened brands in the bottled beverage section of your grocery store. e.g. Zucchini Grocery

Yogurt Parfait

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Yogurt mixed with a handful of granola and fruit can be a perfect pre-work out snack if you are in a hurry. This powerful combination will keep your energy up for that spinning class. I use berries, diced apples or dried fruit.

Dried Fruit and Nuts

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If you are really tight on time to eat before a workout, dried fruits & nuts are perfect because they are light snacks so the simple carbs will provide you with instant energy without weighing you down. Some of my best dried fruits are apricots, berries, and pineapple with a combination of almonds & walnuts.

Whey Protein (USN Blue-Lab Whey Protein)

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Let's take a moment to appreciate these flavours!

Lastly, I present to you the amazing flavours of whey protein by USN. I am yet to try all these flavors but I am currently obsessed with vanilla and strawberry. You can get a tab of this from well stocked pharmacies or shops like Healthy U. The tab comes with a scoop which helps you measure the protein powder that works for you depending on your fitness goals. Pour one scoop into a protein shake bottle (150-200ml), shake it for 30 seconds, allow it to settle for 60 seconds, shake it again and enjoy! I have this an hour before my workout. Its so delicious and you can have it for post workout because it also helps with muscle recovery. Invest in protein shake, trust me.

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This list is not exhaustive; there are a lot more options you can pick from depending on what you prefer to eat. The most important thing to remember is that your body functions like a car; for it be functional, it must be fueled. Fuel it well enough before you rush for your gym session and you will find yourself doing more reps because you will be energized! Stay active and fuel accordingly ;)

Feel free to drop your comments, questions and do subscribe for more wellness tips directly to your email!

Yours in Wellness,