Real Talk Fitness
August 2, 2019
What is the best thing to eat before training?

This depends on a few things. First, the brain and body function the best on an empty stomach, so ask yourself, do I need to eat anything at all? What did I eat for my last meal? Did I overeat or undereat? Is my body nourished? All of these things make a difference. You must eat what is suitable for what the body needs. The reason behind training or exercising or working out is to do something good for you body – so if you haven’t eaten anything all day other than coffee and a pastry, that isn’t an appropriate way to fundamentally treat your body to begin with, let alone stress it out some more with making it exercise. The same goes with psychological stress – sometimes, if you’re mentally exhausted, the type of activity you do should balance that out, so instead of doing something aggressive, perhaps the best thing to do is an internal practice like yoga, qi gong, or a walk through nature.

What you eat also depends on how it makes you feel. Eat something and see how agile and active you feel afterwards. If it makes you feel alive, like you want to go and be active after eating it (excluding stimulants like coffee), then that food has been received well by the body. If the body feels dull after eating something, it means it’s having difficulty with it, so maybe it’s something you should not consume. We generally recommend to either train on an empty stomach (assuming you’re not dehydrated and have enough in your system to sustain your training), or eat something that is light and will give you energy in a natural way, like some fresh fruit and a handful of nuts.

The other component to this is if you’re going to do something fast-paced, your food should be digested before you begin your activity. It isn’t a good idea to do anything strenuous, bouncy, or fast-paced on a full stomach. That will just disrupt digestion, which is a process that already requires a lot of the body’s energy to do properly. You can use leisurely activity like a relaxed walk, on the other hand, to aid in digestion. Taking a 20 minute walk outside after eating a meal will do wonders for digestion.

To submit a question to be answered, email [email protected]