Many people believe that because they have just finished a workout, they can reward themselves by having pizza, ice cream, chocolate etc. when in reality, snacking on the wrong food can undo all your hard work.
Indulging in naughty snacks now and again won't be a deal breaker once you achieve your fitness goals. However, when you train hard and eat right, you’re more likely to enjoy faster results.
Did you know good fats such as coconut oil, avocado, olives and nut butter can assist in fat loss? The same applies to good carbs such as sweet potatoes, pumpkin, brown rice, steel-cut oats and fruits. So, balanced snacks that include good fats, good carbs and protein are your new BFFs when it comes to re-shaping your body, toning up and getting fitter!
Protein, good fats and good carbs should be eaten at every meal (including snacks), not just after you have worked out.
Now that you know about eating good fat and carbs to stay lean, you need to think about protein first. Your body needs protein for muscle repair and recovery. You should have this within 30-60 minutes of training.
No matter what time of day you train, the principles are the same. The time of day will only affect how much you have!
Top 5 Foods to Eat After a Workout
Packed full of protein goodness, eggs can be eaten at any time of day, as part of a meal or as a snack! Eggs have about 6.3 grams of protein in each one! The RDA-recommended levels of protein are between 0.8 to 1.8 grams per kg of body weight: 0.8 grams if you aren’t active, 1.3 grams if you are active or pregnant and 1.8 grams if you are in training and very active.
Hummus is especially great for vegetarians, or just to have a meat-free option. It’s easy to prepare and it contains both protein and good carbs. Hummus is best served with some celery, carrots, cucumber sticks and even a few rice crackers.
Full of protein and omega-3 oils, salmon is great for your joints. It also aids in muscle repair and digestion. Don’t be afraid to have some salmon for breakfast or even as a snack!
There are so many great things about quinoa. In just 1 cup of cooked quinoa, you get 8 grams of protein. It's also full of fibre, magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, folate and more. Quinoa is easy to prepare and you can dress it up with anything — have it for breakfast, snack, lunch or dinner! It is a healthier alternative to couscous or brown rice.
Nuts and seeds
if you need something on the run, or want to add a bit of crunch to your salad, just grab a small handful of mixed nuts and seeds! They’re full of protein and good fats. Just make sure they are raw with no added salt. Almonds, walnuts, pecans and brazils are always a good idea.
Bonus: Homemade Trail Mix
This trail mix is not only packed with protein and good fat — it’s also easy to prepare and you can take it anywhere! All you need is a small container to put it in, add the following and shake:
- Small handful of mixed nuts - cashews, walnuts, pecans, almonds - no more than one to two of each nut
- Small handful/pinch of seeds - pumpkin and sunflower
- Small handful of mixed berries. Frozen is fine if you are taking it on the run. Blueberries are great - full of antioxidants!
- Small pinch of coconut
- A few goji berries and a sprinkle of cinnamon
Don’t forget to hydrate! Drink two to three litres of water a day as a minimum! And of course, give it 100% at each workout session!
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