Hungry Haley

it's more than food

The Best Pre-Workout Foods

Haley HansenComment

I know what it’s like to be halfway through a workout and get that knot in your stomach because of what or when (or both) you ate before you got started. Finding the perfect pre-workout snack is a journey I’m still on, but I’ve discovered some good ones so far…

1.     Brown rice cakes and natural peanut butter – this is my one of my favorite things at any time of day, but it’s perfect a few hours before a workout. The protein from the peanut butter keeps you full and the fiber and carbs from the rice cakes give you a little energy boost! Plus – peanut butter (hello!)! Who doesn’t love another partner to spread their peanut butter on? This is a snack I’ll eat when I know I have at least three hours before my workout so that the peanut butter has time to digest.

2.     Greek yogurt and berries – Again, this is another one of my favorites whenever I’m hungry, (which is, like, always) but what makes it super good pre-workout-fuel are the balance of carbs and protein. If you choose plain Greek yogurt – which you should, just to avoid weird added sugars and sweeteners – you’ll get the perfect amount of good carbs to go with the berries, and the yogurt also comes packed with protein that will even help build muscle after your workout, too!

3.     String cheese and an orange – I love string cheese. I feel like a kid again when I eat it! Except now I’m smarter and cooler and I know that it has lots of protein in such a little package – the perfect amount when my workout is coming up soon. So, why the orange? It’ll provide some carbs you can use quickly, a little more fiber, and lots of vitamin C and hydration from it’s high water content. And you’ll be helping your immune system fight off nasty gym-germs.

4.     An apple and a handful of nuts - When my workout is an hour or two away, here’s a great snack. I reach for pistachios and cashews because they’re my favorite, but almonds and walnuts are great options, too! They all have healthy fats, protein, and fiber to keep you full and energized. The healthy fats may even help boost your fat-burn during and after your workout! Just like the orange, the apple packs a good punch of fiber, quick-carbs, and vitamin C! if you’re looking for a way to change up the apple, try slicing it up, spreading some cinnamon and agave on it, and popping it in the microwave for 20 seconds…

5.     Banana and sunflower seed butter – don’t be weirded-out when I suggest sun-butter. It’s so good – thick, salty, with a little different flavor than peanut or almond butter. Plus, it has omega-6’s and more protein! When you spread it on the banana, you get some good carbs, potassium, and these cute little sandwiches!

6.     Coffee – So this one goes with any of the previous snacks I just told you about. Up until about two months ago, I never liked coffee (unless it was coffee ice cream, duh.). Then, I drank a cup with some milk before a workout and now I drink at least one cup every morning. The caffeine is actually good for you! No, I’m not addicted. I just really like it… that’s all. 

Keep coming back to see what else I find! I love learning about foods and which ones are best at different times of day. I'll keep searching so please stay hungry! :)