You should only have “dinner” first if you can eat it 2-3 hours beforehand to allow time for digestion and absorption of nutrients. Otherwise, a snack before working out in the evening may suit you better. It should consist of carbohydrate for fuel, some protein and very little fat. See our article on Fueling Your Workout by CLICKING HERE.
How much and when you should eat beforehand depend on your last meal.
|If you’ve eaten…||Then you should have:||At this time:|
|Noon lunch + mid-afternoon snack*||Small (150 Calorie) energy bar or a large piece of fruit||An hour prior|
|Nothing since lunch||“mini meal” such as turkey sandwich, then
Drink 6 fl oz juice or 8-12 fl oz sports drink
|Around 5 p.m.
|Late 2:00 lunch||A complete meal replacement shake||30 minutes prior|
|No lunch||A full balanced dinner||5 p.m.|
*The best scenario would be this first option.
After your workout, you can eat more difficult to digest items like vegetables and rich meats or cheese, combined with a starch like pasta, rice, potatoes or corn. Don’t feel the need to fill up your plate. With proper nutrition throughout the day, you may only need a light mini meal such as a bowl of soup.
- Debbie J., MS, RD
Do you have a question about your diet or nutrition?