Pre Training Recipes

Pre Training Recipes

All those who are passionate about the world of fitness and training take care of both training and eating, always seeking to optimize all the variables. Today, we dedicate ourselves to a very important aspect: What to eat in the pre-training?

The constant practice developed by people in some sport of high intensity and power, such as Crossfit, weightlifting, athletics or the popular Functional Fitness, causes an important energy expense to our body.

Therefore, it requires a balanced diet that is as healthy as possible, including sufficiently complete pre-training meals, seeking to balance daily calorie intake with energy expenditure, while taking care to avoid weight gain

What to eat before training?

Before starting training, the ideal is to consume, in general terms, slow absorbing starchy carbs so that they are progressively released.

This allows glycogen stores to be kept longer in the body and not to be depleted as quickly.

This is an important benefit, considering that training in high intensity and power sports usually lasts 45 to 90 minutes or even longer per daily session and the body can continue to burn more calories for 48 hours after this intense training session.

In a normal balanced diet, carbohydrates can constitute over 45-55% of our diet, always depending on each person and situation.

But for a person who trains regularly or is a professional sportsperson, slow or complex carbohydrates can cover 60-65% of the daily calories included in the diet.

Pre-Training what to eat

This increase is due to the fact that a decrease in these essential nutrients can cause early fatigue as a result of glycogen depletion or hypoglycaemia.

This would cause a burnout at the muscular level, which is the nightmare of any high-performance athlete: lowering his muscle percentage due to a lack of nutrients.

Suitable eating for pre-training

Although the slowly absorbed or complex carbohydrates we have already mentioned such as: whole grains, wholemeal bread, legumes, rice… are the ones that generate fullness for longer, this does not mean that simple carbohydrates are harmful to health at the moment.

Suitable food for pre-training

For example, most fruits fall into the category of simple carbohydrates and they should not be absent from a well-balanced diet.

The difference between the two is that slowly absorbed carbohydrates can be consumed at any time and are highly recommended at pre-training eatings.

Which foods are digested fastest?

As we have been saying, the foods that have carbohydrates in their simplest unit (glucose) will be those that are assimilated most quickly and easily.

Pre-Training eat

Dates are an excellent choice to take before training.

Among these: sugar, honey, bananas, sultanas, dried fruits, fruit juices…

What not to eat before training?

What we should never eat before training is only a simple sugar or a food that does not provide energy like vegetables.

Although at a vitamin and mineral level they are great and indispensable, they are not the perfect source of energy to face an exercise session.

On the other hand, since fats require more time to digest and even slow it down, they would not be the most suitable foods to take just before training either.

However, in moderate amounts as a previous meal (2-4h before) would be an option.

How long after eating should I wait to exercise?

An important aspect is that the pre-training eating will depend on the time you have available between the meal and the start of the exercise.

On average you should wait about 30-40 mins.

Keep in mind that the muscles will need to mobilize blood and if that blood is in the stomach doing the digestion you will most likely end up with a bad stomach and even a cut off of digestion.

In this sense, such meals should be rich in carbohydrates to obtain abundant glycogen reserves and achieve efficient high-intensity training; they should also contain proteins that provide the essential amino acids for muscle repair.

We cannot close this section without mentioning the protein shakes taken pre-training, as they are rapidly assimilated, ideal for before starting the exercise. You can learn more at this link.

How much do you eat in pre-training?

It is important to note that you should always take into account the care of the portions to be consumed, which are calculated based on the daily requirement of each individual.

Although this may seem irrelevant, it is of utmost interest to consider it in order to take adequate control according to the type of training and physical condition of the person performing it.


Another aspect to highlight is the need for adequate hydration by those who practice a high intensity and power sport.

Water consumption is imperative to keep the muscles well hydrated. This avoids injuries, cramps and fractures common to sportsmen and women and athletes who develop great power in their exercise sessions.

What to eat before going to the gym to have energy?

An excellent idea is this combination, where the pasta provides carbohydrates and the vegetables, because of the amount of fibre they contain, keep anxiety at bay and control the appetite; they are also very easy to digest.

Pasta with Vegetables

Recipe Tips: Pasta with Vegetables

  • Preparation time: 5 minutes
  • Cooking time: 8 minutes
  • Portion size: 1 Plate
  • Number of servings: 1
  • Cooking style: American


  • 80g pasta
  • 1 bowl of baked, steamed, grilled or mashed vegetables
  • Protein source: 150g chicken breast, turkey or 2 cans of tuna
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt
Nutritional Information per serving
of which saturates:3,4g
of which sugars:4,7g

How to make: Pasta with Vegetables

  1. Cook the pasta.
  2. Cook the chicken or turkey breast
  3. Add the pasta in a deep dish together with the vegetables and the protein source (either the tuna or the chicken breast).
  4. Dress with olive oil and a pinch of salt.

As a recommendation you can vary between broccoli, carrots, asparagus, spinach…

If the training takes place in the afternoon and the nearest meal is lunch, this option is ideal.

What to eat before a bodybuilding session?

If you have between 2 and 4 hours to eat before starting the training, some options you could prepare would be the following:

  • Homemade Oatmeal Toasts

    These pancakes are made with oats in flakes or flour, which are a source of carbohydrates, eggs and milk, as a source of animal protein.

    They are very versatile and easy to make, you can also add some fruit to increase the fructose content, such as a banana or some red fruits.
  • Pancakes for Vegans

    It represents a proposal which is fast, easy and nutritive, as well as being suitable for vegans.

    Rice and oats are slow absorbing carbohydrates, as well as containing protein as in healthy fats,

    This is a highly recommended meal as it helps maintain high energy levels for power training.
  • Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwich

    The banana is a fruit considered to be a carbohydrate with a high potassium content, which helps to prevent cramps during training, which often occur constantly when training for long periods of time.

    Creams or butters made from nuts such as peanuts or almonds are an ideal accompaniment to this meal, taking bread as a carbohydrate base.
  • Muesli, fresh fruit and low-fat yogurt

    The combination of yoghurt with nuts and fresh fruit is one of the preferred choices of many people and is an excellent option, very high in energy, because it includes the three macronutrients: animal protein, fat and carbohydrates.

    It is also quite easy and quick to prepare and digest.
  • Energy Bars

    There are many brands on the market that offer a range of these bars in various flavours and presentations. They are called energy bars because most of their ingredients are carbohydrates, such as oats.

    They can also be made at home and thus facilitate easy division of the portions to be consumed.


  1. “Nutrición deportiva enfocada al cross training” C.F. Galache (2019)
  2. “Nutrición en el deporte. Un enfoque práctico” Louise Burke. (2007)
  3. “Come bien, corre mejor” Karen Cámera
  4. “La guía completa de la nutrición del deportista” Anita Bean (2016)
  5. Conocimientos y experiencia personal

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  • If you are interested in learning more about the Pre-Training Supplements we recommend that you visit the following article.
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About María José García
María José García
María José has been linked to sport since she was a child when she entered and even competed in various sporting disciplines, such as skating, swimming and gymnastics.
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