To get fit and stay strong your body needs to be properly refueled with the appropriate nutrients. Eating within three hours of waking up makes for a high-energy day. Follow a steady meal plan each day by remembering to have meals with carbohydrates and protein. This will ensure the proper amount of energy to exercise and go about your day.


Before any high activity one should have a pre-event meal that focuses on carbohydrate intake. Evidence shows “that exercise performance is typically enhanced following a high carbohydrate meal as compared to a low carbohydrate meal,” according to an ACSM article.


The body uses carbohydrate in the liver and muscles. Carbohydrate can be metabolized to provide energy for the working muscle, which is faster than how the body works with fat. This allows a person to sustain a higher intensity level of exercise, like that online H.I.I.T. workout or a Tabata routine.


Having a pre-workout meal prevents weakness and fatigue, lowers feelings of hunger, and guarantees hydration. This pre-workout meal should consist primarily of carbohydrates and fluids since they are the easiest to digest. Small meals of 400 to 500 calories can be consumed about 2 to 3 hours prior to a workout to allow for digestion and absorption. Any pre-workout meal that’s high in fat, protein, or fiber requires extra time for digestion, such as 5 to 6 hours before a workout.

Here are some pre-workout meals based on the time of day:


Morning meals

To prepare for a high activity workout in the morning eat a high-carbohydrate meal the night before. Then in the early morning eat a light breakfast or snack like a bowl of fruit or a fruit yogurt. If you’re looking for a wholesome breakfast packed with carbohydrates and protein, enjoy a whole grain cereal with milk and fruit on the side.


Afternoon meals

Eat a high-carbohydrate meal both the night before and for breakfast in preparation for an afternoon workout. Then have a light lunch that day or a salad with a low-fat dressing, turkey sandwich, fruit, or rice cakes.


Evening meals

A light meal or snack will do for dinner as a pre-workout meal. Having high-carbohydrate meals throughout the day in your breakfast and lunch will give you the carbohydrate and nutrients the body needs for energy for that evening workout.