Juicing is a great pre-workout meal if you have a juicer or simple blender. It is a quick way to get the most nutrients from fruits and vegetables, and is an excellent addition to nutrition for those training for athletic events (like fall running races, etc.). It is also good for post workout recovery as well.
There are numerous types of foods that can be blended. Specifically complex carbohydrates are best as they take longer to convert to glucose and can provide more consistent energy to your muscles as you workout. Fruits, vegetables and grains are all good sources of complex carbs, and are loaded with vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Our bodies take about five hours to digest fat, three hours for protein, and about two for carbs. Alan Tyson likes to suggest a juice drink for breakfast for athletes, especially if your workout is between one and two hours away. It is a great way for your body to get it’s nutrients and receive the combination of low fat, high carb, moderate protein that is best pre-workout (and good post workout as well).
The following are two recipes for juicing from the book Power Juices Super Drinks by Steve Meyerowitz (Sproutman).
Stamina and Endurance
1 cup apple juice
2 Tbsp. Oat, Rice, or Wheat bran
1 Tbsp. Spirulina
Banana and spirulina are good sources of potassium, important for the conversion of glucose to glycogen for energy. Magnesium (from bran, almonds, and spirulina) is important for the storage and release of glycogen. The foods together help balance blood sugar regulation.
Blend banana and bran in the juice until smooth. Add the spirulina. Add almonds (which should be softened by presoaking or if you like a crunchy, chewy drink, add them at the end).
1 cup soy milk
1 tsp. Whey protein powder
1 Tbsp. Cocoa powder
1 tsp. Honey
Blend all the ingredients together.
The calcium in cocoa acts as a muscle tonic, while whey protein is the richest dietary source of BCAA’s ( a form of amino acids that builds muscle mass). Whey protein also prevents muscle loss, and promotes repair. Honey is a good source of glucose and therefore it is great for energy!
Do you have a juicer or a blender? What is your favorite combo for pre or post workout?