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Post Exercise Food

Exercise and food go hand in hand.  What you eat before you exercise can make a big difference to the quality of your workout and how much you get out of it.  Post exercise food is just as important in order to replenish your lost liquid as well as to help your muscles to recover and to replace lost glycogen stores.

For muscle recovery and the replacement of your glycogen stores, it is important to eat a meal that contains both protein and carbohydrates within two hours after your exercise session. 

The following is a guide to good post-exercise foods:

  •     Yoghurt and fruit;
  •     Wholemeal peanut butter sandwich;
  •     Wholemeal pasta with meatballs;
  •     Chicken with brown rice.

Don’t forget to drink up

In order to prevent dehydration, you will need to drink adequate fluids before, during and after you work out.

Being well hydrated is a very important aspect of your exercise routine.  Because dehydration can potentially increase the risk of a heat injury such as heat stroke, it is important that you strive for hydration before, during and especially after exercise in order to rehydrate.

The American College of sports recommends a guideline of drinking 2-3 cups of water for every 0.5 kilogram of weight lost during your workout. 
Water is generally the best way to rehydrate.  Sports drinks are another good option.  They can help maintain your body’s electrolyte balance and increase your energy levels as they contain carbohydrates.

Let your experience be the guide

When it comes to food and exercise, everyone is different and individual.  It is important to pay close attention to how you feel during your workout and post your workout, and to your overall performance.  Let your experience and how you feel guide you on pre and post eating habit that will work best for you.

A food and exercise diary will help you monitor your body’s reaction to certain meals and snacks.  This gives you a comprehensive guide on the kind of diet that works best for your exercise load.

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