Title Pre, During & Post Exercise Eating

Good nutrition gives you enough energy to start a workout, helps you perform at your best during exercise and finally, lets you recover quickly . Here are some guidelines to help you choose the right foods before and after you exercise:Eating Before Exercise Purpose of the pre-exercise snack.

to prevent hunger before and during exercise

  • to prevent low blood sugar and its symptoms of dizziness and fatigue
  • to provide fuel for muscles for activity lasting longer than 60 to 90 minutes . For shorter workouts, your muscles will use the energy they have already stored, not the energy from the pre-exercise snack

Generally you need a pre-exercise snack if you haven’t eaten in four to six hours, feel hungry or are going to be doing endurance exercise . What the stomach can tolerate before exercise is an individual thing . Some people experience nausea or indigestion if they exercise after eating . Some may find bananas are great fuel, others swear by multigrain cereal . You may need to experiment with pre-exercise eating to find what works for you Factors affecting pre-exercise food tolerance

  • Intensity of exercise

During high intensity exercise your stomach gets only 20% of its normal blood flow which slows the digestive process and can cause stomach cramps . During low or moderate intensity exercise your stomach gets 60 to 70% of normal blood flow so you can still digest food and exercise comfortably .

  • Type of exercise

Those who do sports where the body moves up and down, such as running, tend to be more sensitive to pre-exercise eating than those in sports where the body is relatively stable, as in cycling . So you may be able to eat a sandwich 30 minutes before a bike ride, but could never tolerate it before a run .
Timing of meals
To digest your food, generally allow four hours for a large meal, two to three hours for a smaller meal, and one hour or less for a small snack .
What to eat
Which of the following is not a good choice for a pre-exercise
Peanuts are high in fat so they would be the poor choice . Pre exercise foods should be high in carbohydrate, low to moderate in protein and low in fat . Carbohydrate is digested the quickest and is least likely to bother your stomach, followed by protein and fat

Here are some pre-exercise snack suggestions:
• low-fat cookies (arrowroot, • low-fat crackers (sodasocial tea, graham wafers) crackers, melba toast)
• yogurt • fruit
• cereal • pretzels
• bagel, bread • pasta

Morning exercisers
Your blood sugar is low in the morning . Eating or drinking something first thing in the morning increases your blood sugar and improves mental alertness . Remember, your brain uses blood sugar for energy or did you skip breakfast and can’t recall that fact? This pre-exercise snack will also give your muscles energy if you are exercising for longer than 60 to 90 minutes .

Eating During Exercise
For exercise that lasts less than an hour, water is all that is needed . For exercise lasting longer than an hour, consuming carbohydrate may help improve performance . About 30-60 grams of carbohydrate per hour seems to help stamina .Either liquids or solids can be consumed, however liquids tend to be tolerated best

Which of the following can help you recover after a workout?
diet cola
Fruit is the number one choice here . After exercise you want to replace the fluid lost and replenish the muscle energy you just spent . The only way to do this is to eat carbohydrate and drink non-alcoholic, decaffeinated beverages . Beer and diet cola are poor choices for recovery fluids . Beer is a poor source of carbohydrates and diet cola provides none at all . Orange juice has three times the amount of carbohydrate that beer does . The alcohol in beer and caffeine in cola are both dehydrating . The high-carbohydrate, low-fat suggestions for preexercise snacking are also appropriate for after exercise .

Endurance exercisers
If you workout day after day, participate in all-day tournaments or workout more than once a day, you’ll want to pay particular attention to your recovery food . After participating in endurance activity, your muscle fuel or glycogen will likely be close to empty . It usually takes at least 24 hours to replenish it . Muscles are most receptive to storing glycogen immediately after exercise . The longer you wait to eat, the longer it takes to replenish glycogen stores . If your muscles don’t catch up before your next workout, you will suffer from early muscle fatigue the next time out . Start eating carbohydrate-rich foods 15 to 30 minutes after exercise . Adding protein packed foods to your post-workout snack can enhance glycogen re-synthesis and muscle repair when eaten after exercise . Foods like yogurt, milk or meat all provide protein (refer to Water and Sports Drinks in this section for fluid and electrolyte needs pre, during and post exercise)

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