23 June 2010

Eat to Workout or Workout to Eat?

The other day at the park I over heard a friend say, “Oh, these cookies are so good, it’s a good thing I’m working out later so I can work them off.” We all had a little chuckle and then went back to our conversations. As I was buckling my kids into the van and contemplating the fact that I, personally, hadn’t been to the pool to workout in over a week, I started thinking. Weight loss and nutrition do not always go hand in hand. Sure, weight loss, in its simplest form, is nothing more than calories in must be smaller than calories out. But let’s think about this for a moment, shall we? Does my friend work out simply so she can eat a few extra cookies? Do we workout so we can eat (anything we want)? Or do we eat so that we can workout?

Calories in/calories out is great. But you have to consider what is in those calories. I love my workouts. I get cranky when I don’t get to go to the pool as often as I’d like, but do you know what really pisses me off? When I finally do make it to the pool and I have a crappy workout because of the food I’ve eaten. Our bodies simply cannot turn junk food into quality fuel for our bodies. Junk food = junk fuel. Quality food = quality fuel. It doesn’t get any simpler than that.

I always have a protein shake before my workout and I always have a green smoothie afterwards. About an hour later I’m usually starving so I’ll have a deviled egg (or some other high quality protein) with a big salad. When I workout I crave nutritious, usually high raw, quality foods. I get a high from working out and the quickest way to kill my buzz is to eat some “passes as food” processed crap that makes me feel ill.

What are some of your favorite pre & post workout foods?

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