Fuel Your Outdoor Workouts

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As the weather warms up and the sun beckons us outside, many of us are eager to take our workouts outdoors! Whether you’re hitting the trails for a run, cycling through scenic routes or embarking on a challenging hike, it’s crucial to fuel your body properly for optimal performance and recovery. As a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist I’m here to share some nutrition tips to help you prepare for your outdoor workouts!

  1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate: Before heading out ensure you’re well hydrated by drinking water throughout the day during longer workouts especially in the heat consider bringing along a water bottle to sip on regularly
  2. Balance macronutrients: Aim for a pre-workout meal or snack that includes Caucasian woman wearing sunglasses drinking a water bottle on a hot day.carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats. Carbohydrates provide the primary source of energy while protein supports muscle repair and growth and healthy fats help sustain energy levels
  3. Choose complex carbohydrates: Opt for complex carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, which provide a steady release of energy and help prevent blood sugar crashes during your workout. Examples include oatmeal with berries, whole grain toast with avocado or a banana with almond butter
  4. Include lean protein: Incorporate lean sources of protein to support muscle recovery and maintenance: low or non-fat Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, hard boiled eggs or a turkey wrap with whole grain bread are excellent options
  5. Stay fueled during longer workouts: For activities lasting longer than an hour consider bringing along easily digestible snacks to fuel your body and maintain energy levels. Portable options like dried fruit, nuts, or granola bars can provide a quick source of carbohydrates to keep you going

Its important to note that the timing of a post workout meal or snack can vary depending on the type and intensity of exercise and personal preference! After a long run, its essential to refuel your body within 30 minutes to an hour after finishing your run. Aim to consume a balanced meal or snack containing carbohydrates to replenish glycogen stores (stored form of carbohydrate), protein to support muscle repair and fluid to re-hydrate (Costill & Hargreaves., 1992)

For strength training, it is generally recommended to consume a post-workout meal or snack within 30 minutes to two hours after your workout. Your muscles need protein for repair and recovery! Focus on consuming a combination of protein and carbohydrates to replenish glycogen stores and support muscle repair and growth (Phillips., 2012)

Adjust the timing and composition of your post-workout meal or snack based on your individual preferences.

I hope these quick tips get you ready to tackle your outdoor workouts with energy and enthusiasm! Remember to listen to your body’s cues. With the right fuel you’ll be well equipped to enjoy the great outdoors while achieving your fitness goals.

Healthy regards,

Cassandra Valle, RDN

Medical Advice Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is for informational and educational purposes only. No material provided in this blog, including images and graphics, is intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider before making any dietary changes or starting a new health care regimen.  Do not neglect professional advice because of what you may have read in this blog.

Portrait of JNCS Registered Dietitian Nutritionis CassandraAbout the Author: Cassandra is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. She graduated with a B.S in Nutritional Science with a concentration in Dietetics in from San Jose State University. Cassandra believes nutrition information, as it exists today, does not fully accommodate all cultural traditions and backgrounds. Cassandra’s goal is to work with individuals step-by-step to help them achieve their personal nutritional health and wellness goals. It is her passion to help individuals cultivate positive, sustainable healthy nutritional habits that they can carry with them throughout life.

 

References:

Costill, D. L., & Hargreaves, M. (1992). Carbohydrate nutrition and fatigue. Sports Medicine, 13(2), 86–92. https://doi.org/10.2165/00007256-199213020-00002

Phillips, S. M. (2012). Dietary protein for athletes: From requirements to optimum adaptation. Journal of Sports Sciences, 29(Suppl 1), S29–S38. https://doi.org/10.1080/02640414.2011.619204

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