Pre- and post-workout nutrition can be very confusing. When it comes to a pre-workout meal it’s best to stay away from larger meals (>600 calories) within one hour before you workout. (If you are planning on doing a high-intensity workout then wait even longer.)
This is because if you consume that large of a meal close to the time of your workout, your digestive system will compete with your muscles for blood!
During a workout you want a good portion of blood in the extremities you are exercising (to give you that “pump”), not locked up in your digestive system trying to digest your food. You are sort of fighting your own physiology that way.
That being said, a protein and carb rich snack of less than 200 calories 30-60 minutes before your workout can help increase your energy levels so you can destroy your workout!
Josh Anderson is an AFAA Certified Personal Fitness Trainer and the CEO of Always Active Athletics.