Making sure you fuel your body with the proper pre and post workout meals and snacks should always be marked as a high priority along your fitness journey. What you put in your body before and after your sweat session is key to keeping your health and energy at peak levels and ensuring your workouts are effective. 11 of our photo contest winners dished on what they can be found munching on prior to hitting the gym and after they finish burning calories. We’ve rounded up the answers from their exclusive PRETTY GIRLS SWEAT interviews and we're serving up 11 doses of workout-friendly meal inspiration below.
1. Bre Leach
My go-to pre-workout meal choices are fruit and peanut butter, a protein shake, or nuts and dried fruit mix. Right after a workout, I refuel with a protein shake, a salad, or Smoothie King!
I love overnight oats with a banana, oatmeal, almond milk and fancy peanut butter to get my day going. Post workout I am obsessed with this blueberry smoothie I make with almond milk, peanut butter, frozen blueberries and Vega One protein. It's delish!
3. Shanna Tyler
“My go-to pre-workout meal is usually oatmeal and blueberries as I tend to workout in the morning. My after-workout fuel is a banana and/or peanut butter (sandwich, protein bar, anything!).
Since I normally get my workouts in earlier in the day, my pre-workout meals are usually my breakfast! I love having a bowl of steel-cut oats mixed with banana, blueberries, and some honey drizzled on top. I really enjoy the Orgain Organic Protein (which is a plant-based protein powder). I put a scoop in with my water or almond milk, and it's a great source of protein post-workout!
I am vegan, so my pre-workout meal options vary between either a smoothie, vegan yogurt with fruit and nuts or a rice cake with nut butter. For a post workout, I eat something high in protein like curry chickpeas & brown rice.
If I feel like I need something to charge me up then I’ll have 1/2 cup of green tea or black coffee and some oatmeal. Post-workout I’ll have a Protein smoothie (typically plant protein + 1/2 banana + almond milk + frozen berries), or I’ll eat a full breakfast that usually includes a veggie omelet + fruit + oatmeal.
My pre-workout meal is very basic but filling. I love eating 2 slices of toast with peanut butter and a fruit smoothie (usually has pineapple, bananas (helps with cramping), and coconut. Post workout meal usually involves either chicken or salmon but I usually prefer salmon since I’m a fiend for it and the omega 3 fatty acids in it help reduce muscle inflammation. Combine that with a whole lot of veggies and I’m good to go!
My go-to pre-workout meal includes a bottle of water and a lot of fruit. I like to start with water so I can stay hydrated during my workout. My post workout usually consists of more water and some carbs.
My pre-workout meal is a piece of whole wheat toast, PB, and sliced bananas! It is loaded with complex carbohydrates, fruit, and protein. My post-workout meal varies depending on the time of day but it definitely will have protein, healthy grains, and fruit/vegetables.
10. Janaya Hampton
Since I normally workout in the morning, oatmeal is my normal go to. I really love how it gives me just enough energy to make it through the entire workout, but IMMEDIATELY afterward I always get a sugar-free smoothie, or I'll make a grilled chicken wrap at home (I like cooking).
11. La’China Barnes
My go-to pre-workout meal is definitely a shake. I think that you should start off with something energizing but light. However, after a workout, I am mostly looking into my greens, my oats and so forth. My usual workout routine is done at 6 am, 4-5 days out of the week, therefore my refuel meal is usually a healthy breakfast dish (egg whites, avocado, oatmeal, fruit, etc.)