Kirk’s #GoVeggies 31-Day Challenge, Day 13: Your Pre-Work Out Diet

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What you eat before a workout has great influence regarding the quality of your workout. Many years ago, I was a fierce tennis player and there was a gentleman I played with frequently during the mornings. He was older than I was, eight inches shorter and at least 50 pounds lighter. He didn’t have my speed nor my strength. However, he beat me every time we played. 

My mistake was that I only drank water before we played, nothing else. Then I saw highlights of the great tennis player, Michael Chang, who won the French Open in 1989.  During that tournament he had severe muscle cramps, from which I also suffered from time to time. He ate bananas while he played to overcome those cramps and for energy.  After I started eating bananas, my friend that used to beat the manure out of me never beat me again.

At least an hour before workouts, I get some carbs into my body for energy. Fruit is always my top choice for those carbs. My preferences are bananas and oranges, but any fruit can work. Your body prefers to run off of carbs, that’s why you see so many people “carb load” before long stints of cardio. You may have noticed that before marathons many people load up on pasta the night before to store carbs as glycogen in their bodies. 

There’s about two pounds of glycogen in your liver and another two pounds stored in your muscles. That stored glycogen may deplete after 30 or so minutes of cardio, therefore you will need to put more in through the food you eat. Elite tennis players know this, that’s why you see them eating bananas during breaks in a match.

So, try fruit as your energy source and only use energy bars and other artificial sources if have no other option. Your metabolism will thank you.

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