One of the most important meals for any athlete is the one before training or competition. What you eat and how long before exercise that you eat are they key points to consider. Depending on the sport and competition level, you may have different food requirements before training than before competition.
The most suitable pre-exercise meal will differ for each sport and for each individual athlete. In general, the pre-exercise meal that is consumed a couple of hours before the session should be based on carbohydrate-rich foods. Closer to the event, carbohydrate rich snacks can be eaten leading up to the session. What should be avoided are high-fat or high-protein foods. Good hydration practices are also essential. Below are a couple of articles on this topic that may answer your questions in this very important area.
- Planning your pre-exercise meal — Clare discusses the key points in planning your pre-exercise meals, such as timing, food types and amounts.
- Pre-Game Meal — Here are some example of foods you can eat before exercise.
- Pre-Competition — advice about what and when to eat and drink before training and competition [interview transcript].
- Carbohydrate Loading — involves stocking up the carbo stores in the days prior to a major event.
- Pre-Exercise Hydration — it is important to start exercise in a well-hydrated state.
- Pre-Workouts — a supplement drink to give you an energy boost before exercise.
- What to eat before fitness testing — preparing the body to maximize your fitness test performance.
- More about carbohydrates and athletes
- High Carbohydrate Eating — Are you getting enough for your sport?
- Fuel for Exercise — nutrition strategies pre, post and during exercise.