Tagged: workout meals
July 18, 2013 at 3:42 pm #9440Mali KorstenParticipant
What are the best meals to consume pre- and post-workout? What are the optimal macro ratios for each?
Thanks!July 18, 2013 at 6:21 pm #9446ThomasSeayModerator
Honestly, I would just eat. I have been an athlete my entire life, and I have never noticed any difference. Just make sure that you don’t work out on an empty stomach and make sure you eat reasonably soon after your workout. After workout, it’s important for it to be carbohydrate rich, but I don’t think more detail than that is really necessary. Don’t get any fancy workout drinks. Just drink milk, or eat ice-cream or a piece of cheese-cake or gorge yourself on Twinkies.
Seriously Mali, these little details like workout times and precise meals are mostly bullshit that the fitness industry popularizes to arrogate authority to themselves. Most of the Personal Trainers in the gym and on the Internet just want to make themselves look special, different and give you the notion that they give you some kind of special edge. In fact, it’s usually bullshit. I used to train at the Sports Palace in San Francisco which, in its day, was one of the top Olympic Lifting gyms in the country. Jim Schmitz was the coach there and had been the US Olympic Weightlifting Coach 3 times. I can guarantee you that nobody there was anal about exactly what they ate pre or post workout or workout timing.July 19, 2013 at 5:03 am #9502
i’ve actually been finding i’m getting really improved workouts by eating a huge meal (1000-1200 cals), then working out about 8-10 hours later (without feeding again before then, but eating a good dose of food right after)
not trying to be an obnoxious devil’s advocate (maybe the above doesn’t even count as an “empty” stomach), but rather confirm that there isn’t an optimal timeframe or macro-ratio and that experimentation will help you figure it out best (unless i’m making a huge mistake and killing my metabolism by doing this, yikes)July 20, 2013 at 3:30 pm #9629The Real AmyModerator
For pre-workouts, 1 word: sugar. For me, that makes the biggest impact in having a good workout. I don’t really do refined sugars, but I’ll have a carby pre-workout meal like toast with honey and salt and just a tiny bit of butter, and a glass of OJ, and/or some fruit leathers. I think sugar is far superior to starch for fueling a workout, but a combo of the two is good.July 23, 2013 at 6:41 pm #9865OrganicMuscleParticipant
Conflicting studies on the “anabolic window” make this a difficult question to answer. I’m generally with Thomas Seay with a couple of caveats. 1) Intensity of training. If you are repeatedly hitting lactic acid threshold during your training, then it makes sense that you would replace some of the muscle glycogen that you are using. Thus carbs. 2) Time of workout. If you are training fasted (which many who workout in the morning are) a post-workout something is essential. Now, i’m not saying that it needs to be a shake, but it should be something that you can consume with ease (simply so you don’t skip recovery). Greek yogurt + sugar + several pieces of fruit is good. 3) Overall protein consumption. If you’re not providing adequate protein to replenish your amino acid pools, then protein post workout is necessary. Plus, the additional protein does contribute to the thermogenic effect of feeding = more calories burnt with no external effort.
Pre-workout is simpler: caffeine or yerbal mate.
And so i answer your question exactly:
– Pre-workout: caffiene + small glass of salted-OJ 30 minutes pre=workout
– Post-workout (if trained as above): 1:3 or 1:5 ratio of protein to carbs. Hit at least 20g of carbs (i usually opt for 40g … i’m around 160lbs).July 25, 2013 at 5:19 am #9992
Agree, carbs an hour or two before hand to pep up, and a nice big mix of all the food groups afterwards. Avoid eating too much bulk or fibre before hand to not feel too sluggish. most important thing really is to be well nourished overall- then the timing and content of eating matters much much less in terms of workout ability.
[Aside to Heatherduke: not wanting to be confrontational, but 1000-1200kcal a huge meal??? ‘Not’ an empty stomach after 8-10hrs??? 1000 kcal could easily be a meal for a NON exercise day, and be followed by another as little as 4 hours later if you are metabolically healthy…..You might be finding that these workouts are improving because you are eating too little in general]July 25, 2013 at 9:51 am #10001Mali KorstenParticipant
Thanks for the advice, everyone! I can’t workout on an empty stomach, as I’m prone to low blood pressure and low blood sugar. In fact, if I don’t eat something (or at least have a sugary drink) immediately before working out, I get the dizzies! It’s seeming like sugar and a little bit of protein is the best way to go, but without worrying too much or getting too obsessed with specific macros. So I’m just going to keep my sugar intake high and make sure to eat as soon as possible after working out.
Thanks again!July 25, 2013 at 12:49 pm #10013
ugh, no, you’re not being confrontational @imago, you nailed me
i forget a lot that i’m not actually recovered, just stubbornly staying in quasi-recovery for the rest of my life (i think i remember you from YE?), and that thereby my experiences aren’t really applicable as advice and are possibly even triggering (sorry anyone)July 25, 2013 at 12:56 pm #10015
Haha no worries Heather, yes I have been there since April 2012. I’m sorry to hear that you are resigning yourself. Though you might not want to leap in to Minnimaud- there is no need not to make baby steps towards making things better. The forums on YE can be a bit militant on the whole ‘eat the MM min or YOU WILL DIE’, which is patently not true. I think that, while MM may have many benefits, it should be one of a range of options and plenty of people recover in different ways. I myself did MM for about 4 months, then went more Kartini since then, and feel that was def the right move health wise. Don’t feel like it has to be all or nothing- just do what you can do an you will get there eventually!
all the best, NatJuly 25, 2013 at 1:37 pm #10021
that’s really awesome to hear, especially about kartini working for you–you’re right about the militance of YE (i get why it’s sort of the rule, that that’s the better error for a recovering ED individual to fall into, but it can be kind of intimidating for sure)
anyway um not to derail this thread entirely–eventually i will put something somewhere about how i got here (i actually followed MM for about 5 months until my docs told me i could start maintaining my weight) and where i should go next
thanks for all your thoughts !July 25, 2013 at 2:12 pm #10024DavidModerator
I just wanted to second what Thomas said up top. One of the easiest ways to maintain authority over people is to convince them that you have special knowledge. Sometimes this is legitimate, but it’s also common to see gurus over-complicate something simple, as a trick to make themselves indispensable. When it comes to workout nutrition, I think the basic concepts are pretty simple. As long as your body is well fueled–sufficient carbs and protein–you’ll do just fine.
For inspiration, I’m linking to some pictures of what Olympic athletes from the 2012 Games were eating. You’ve probably all seen the ridiculous piles of food that Michael Phelps ate, but these are non-endurance athletes who are eating pretty normal diets. You’ll notice a lot of fruit (especially bananas), OJ, pasta, rice, beans, lean meat, milk, cheese, and eggs. With the exception of the martial artist (in Taekwando), who was trying to cut weight for her weight class, they all eat about 3,000-3,500 calories a day.July 26, 2013 at 6:22 am #10072
Oops, sorry to preach to the converted Heather :P
It does seem like particular results can come from nutrition at the highest levels of athletic performance- but that is when you are really at the edge of ability, and for your average person, it just simply will not make that much difference and is not worth the neurotic over-thinking it would lead to for some people.
3000-3500 does not seem very much fro people training full time! Your average young man or woman should be eating close to that with a very moderate amount of exercise- I suppose it just goes to show the effects of extended training on the metabolism, causing adaptation, and possibly the requirements of having to artificially keep weight down as well as increase athletic performance at the top level.July 26, 2013 at 7:09 am #10073DavidModerator
Imago, I agree with you that the calorie totals seem low, and I almost didn’t post the link for that reason. I think part of the explanation may be that three of the five athletes are in sports with weight classes (taekwondo, wrestling, and weight lifting), and the other two (track and javelin) don’t require much endurance training. Your thoughts about adaptation also make sense. Not to mention, those five athletes seem kind of small.
What really interested me about the pictures was how normal the foods were. The spreads were made up of typical everyday foods, with the exception that there wasn’t any “junk food” in there.July 26, 2013 at 11:32 am #10083
That definitely makes sense- especially if you wanted to increase efficiency without putting on muscle mass etc.
That is definitely true, and it is also interesting that they don’t seem to eat much veg, so the digestibility of what they eat is quite high.July 26, 2013 at 7:17 pm #10107OrganicMuscleParticipant
@imago: “It does seem like particular results can come from nutrition at the highest levels of athletic performance- but that is when you are really at the edge of ability, and for your average person, it just simply will not make that much difference and is not worth the neurotic over-thinkin”
I generally disagree with this. Most frequent gym-goers are either 1) underfed 2) overfed 3) paying absolutely no attention to diet whatsoever. If one’s goal is to lose weight weight in the gym (90% of my clients want to shed lbs.) then diet is always the first thing we talk about (diet and hypothyroidism ;-)) For Olympic athletes the question of diet becomes even more important. On the level of elite competition, everything matters. I would wager that such a small size of athletes doesn’t well represent the neurotic nature of competition. Walk in to almost any gym, anywhere, and talk to a musclebound man or woman about what they eat … you are sure get an earful.
@Imago: 3000-3500 does not seem very much fro people training full time! Your average young man or woman should be eating close to that with a very moderate amount of exercise
The term moderate is fairly vague. For instance, I personally train around 20 hours per week (~3 hours per day, 6 days a week). You might not consider this moderate, but for a well-trained athlete that has trained extensively over time 3 hours can be like a warmup. Ever spent an entire day in the gym? I do this routinely. My temps (since recovery) are quite stable at 97.8 (waking axial). My caloric input sustains my effort. Without additional exertion, like an Olympic athlete, the additional calories would be unnecessary, for me at least … UNLESS you were/are in recovery … then the sole goal should be recovery.
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