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Pre, During and Post Workout Recovery

Published : Nov 05, 2019 2 mins read Updated On : Jul 20, 2022

Pre, during and post-workout meals play an important role in the effectiveness of your training and gaming sessions. It helps you perform at your best and shape your results. Let’s take a deeper look into the purpose of pre-workout, during and post-workout meals, meal timing, and what to eat. The purpose of a pre-workout meal is simple: to fuel your activity.

To do that, your body needs two things:

1. Carbs, for energy production needed for the activity
2. Protein, to supply your muscles with the right amino acids.

Some examples of pre-workout meals that include a balance of carbs and protein include:

  • Oatmeal with milk and fruit
  • Apple with nut butter
  • Trail mix with fruits
  • Greek yogurt with fruit
  • Peanut butter-banana sandwich

How soon before the workout should the meal be eaten?

  • All the above meals should be consumed 1-2 hours the activity depending on how quickly your body digests food. Liquid meals (like smoothies, supplement shakes, etc.) digest more easily and can be consumed closer to the workout time.
  •  It is advisable to consume a pre workout drink just prior to the activity to activate your body.
  • Avoid eating just prior to the workout. It can cause digestive discomfort, but it sometimes creates digestion issues at the same time if you’re pushing your muscles to perform.

Pre, during and post workout recovery

What should one eat during the workout?

Then during the workout meal should be goal specific. Generally, it should be a fruit like banana and a BCAA drink to keep the muscle energy and hydration up.

Pre, during and post workout recovery


Post-workout nutrition is more complex but important for recovery. Its purpose is to supply your body with everything it needs to repair, replenish, recover and training adaptations.

More specifically, post-workout nutrition helps to:

  • Minimize muscle damage in the body
  • Increase muscle protein synthesis in the body
  • Replenish muscle glycogen 
  • Reduce cortisol (stress hormone) levels
  • Reduce muscle soreness post activity

To do that, your body once again needs these two things:

1.Carbs for energy
2.Protein for muscle recovery

Many people prefer to take this nutrition as a recovery drink or shake, for the quickness, convenience, and optimal recovery. A lot of times appetite is suppressed following a tough workout, making liquid nutrition the more appealing option. It is fine to split the difference by having a recovery effervescent drink immediately post-workout, then rounding things out later with some additional carbs and protein food sources.
Pre, during and post workout recovery
How soon after the workout should the meal be eaten?

As soon as possible—within the first 30 minutes after your workout. Post-workout, the body is primed to receive vital nutrients and their training adaptations.


Are pre- and post-workout meals still needed? That depends on the intensity level of your workout, and if it will require energy over and above what’s already provided by your daily meals.

A post-workout snack, like a small meal and an amino acid recovery drink, can help you recover faster and replenish lost fluids. It’s important to remember that any pre- or post-workout meals should be included as part of your recommended daily caloric intake. You need to create a deficit in calories in order to lose fat and weight.

Mohd Amaan
Mohd Amaan
Daily Wellbeing

Amaan is someone who loves to read and write. He is a writer and editor with passion for daily wellbeing. His focus areas are daily wellbeing and overall health. He writes about health hacks, nutri... Read More

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