“Sweat like a pig to look like a fox“
~ & what to eat post-workout ~
I love the phrase “sweat like a pig to look like a fox”. It always reminds me that if I’m not dripping sweat and looking awful after a workout, I probably didn’t push myself as hard as I could have. Whenever I’m done boxing or running on the trails, I always have that tomato-red-face look and sweat dripping down myself, but it is SO WORTH IT. Who cares what you look like while you workout? You’re already killin’ it by busting your ass and you will look amazing after you shower and put on that hot dress! To look and feel good, you gotta work hard!
After a tough workout (cough cough BLAST kicking my ass today!) it’s important to eat a mixture of protein and carbs within 30 minutes after your workout. Why? To replenish lost energy, aid in recovery, and help refuel muscles with protein so your muscles build strength rather than get depleted.
- Examples of Carbohydrates: fruit, starches like potatoes/corn, whole wheat bread/crackers/pasta, oatmeal, any veggies
- Examples of Protein: low-fat cheese, low-fat milk or yogurt, lean meats, beans, nuts and seeds, turkey jerkey, tofu, protein powder, protein bars, etc.
However, just going on a 30 minute walk or doing 20 minutes on the elliptical doesn’t require a post-meal refueling. Then, you’d just end up probably taking in more calories than you even burned. For workouts lasting an hour or more, it is more important to make sure you refuel with adequate water AND a small meal or snack to keep your muscles growing and help your body recover. TIMING is key however. If you don’t like to workout with any food in your stomach, plan your exercise to eat a regular meal afterwards. For instance, I know some people don’t like to eat breakfast before they work out in the mornings. Therefore, after you hit the trails or finish that tough workout class, instead of a post-training refuel snack, just eat your regular meal (in this case breakfast) making sure it has both protein and carbs, and maybe some healthy fats in addition to keep you full throughout the day.
Also, I recommend rehydrating BEFORE you eat. You lose a lot of sweat and water working out, and replenishing it is key to avoid dehydration. Dehydration can make you feel tired, bloated, and shaky after a workout if you aren’t taking in as much water as you are losing. Not only is hydrating important after your workout, but also before! If you drink throughout the day prior to your workout, you will be able to work harder and feel better. Maybe even set a silent alarm on your phone every few hours to drink water! (that’s what I do…I don’t always follow it though :/ )
All in all, here are some of my favorite post-
asskicking workout snacks:
Clockwise from top right:
- Shaklee 180 Smoothee Mix (Vanilla) — mix 2 scoops of this protein powder with unsweetened almond milk and half a banana or any other fruit to get a low-cal protein punch smoothie.
- Apple + Maple Vanilla Coconut Almond butter (found online here….its a dream)
- Easy and healthy combo of carbs and protein
- Quest Bars–these are seriously THE BEST! They come in lots of different flavors (favorites include cookie dough, double chocolate chunk, cookies n creme [seriously tastes like an oreo], and cinnamon roll)
- They are gluten free, low carb, high protein, low calorie, high fiber, and low sugar. The ultimate protein bar.
- Example of the nutrition facts label from the Cinnamon Roll flavor:
- Kind Bars
- low glycemic, high fiber, low calorie, and delicious!! Full of good fats. Also gluten free.
- Fresh pressed almond milk (one is vanilla almond milk and the other is “Nutty Joe”: espresso vanilla AM (found locally here in Athens)
There are plenty of other great examples of post-workout snacks such as string cheese and a handful of nuts, celery with PB and raisins (aka ants on a log), whole wheat pretzels and 1 oz. of cheese, low-fat greek yogurt with a few nuts/berries, a slice of whole wheat toast with peanut butter. Just make sure to try and eat within 30-45 minutes of your workout and hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!!