Nutrition Mistakes: Five Foods that Hinder Exercise

It's essential to know what to eat before, during and after exercise. Read this article to avoid the nutrition mistakes that make your workouts ineffective.
Nutrition Mistakes: Five Foods that Hinder Exercise

Last update: 16 October, 2018

Do you exercise regularly but still can’t seem to get the results you want? This can be due to a number of factors, including an inadequate diet. It’s important to avoid nutrition mistakes in order to get the most out of your workouts.

In this article, we’ll explain the five nutrition mistakes that will derail your fitness goals. If you eat these five foods regularly, you’ll need to replace them with more appropriate options that better suit your needs. If you don’t, all of the effort will go to waste, and you won’t see any positive changes.

1. Nutrition mistakes: fried foods

Fried foods have become a staple of many people’s diets. They’re a bad idea at any time of day, but especially before you work out. Due to their high fat content, they lead to slow digestion. The stomach has to work for hours to process them. This means that you’ll feel tired and even sleepy after eating them.

If you exercise after eating fried foods, you’ll feel heavier and more fatigued, and as a result you won’t perform at an optimal level. If you enjoy this type of food, we recommend that you only eat it once a week, and always on the days when you don’t exercise.

2. Energy drinks

Some people are in the habit of having an energy drink before working out. They think it helps them to be more active, do more sets, and perform better. While it’s true that they give you a feeling of greater concentration and vitality, it’s nothing more than a feeling.

Energy drink
Energy drinks should be consumed responsibly.

The reality is that energy drinks contain exorbitant amounts of sugar, which does not benefit the body. You may burn more calories, but you need to remember that these drinks contain far more calories than you’re burning.

3. Gummy treats

Gummy treats are basically sugar, sugar, and more sugar! They offer the body no benefits whatsoever, and are not recommended at all. People used to think that a small amount could be helpful because the body needs sugar to function properly.

The reality is that the sugar the body needs can be found in far healthier foods that also contain nutrients. Fruits are one clear example.

4. Salty snacks

Salty snacks are highly addictive, and it’s impossible to eat just one or two. They contain mainly fat and salt. Both are detrimental to exercise. Whether you eat them before or after you exercise, you should know that you’re throwing away all of the effort that you make.

Bowl of pretzels

If you’re in the mood for a snack, we recommend that you eat a handful of nuts. They’re much healthier, and also provide you with energy.

5. Pre-cooked meals

Let’s say you leave work late and are running late to the gym. As you don’t have time to cook, you pick up a pre-cooked meal, in order to make it to your class on time. If you do this regularly, you should know that even going to the gym all the time won’t get you the results you want. This is due to the fact that you’re eating the type of food that will hinder your exercise regimen.

When you get to the gym, your stomach will still be digesting large amounts of fats, salt, colorings, and preservatives. These will make it impossible to perform exercise at an adequate level. In addition, these foods are so high in calories that it will be difficult to burn them over the course of your workout.

What to eat before and after working out

With so many restrictions, you must be wondering what you should be eating before and after exercising, in order to get the results you want? As you’ll see, a proper diet doesn’t have to be complicated. Simply eliminate the kind of nutrition mistakes that hamper your workout efforts, and eat before and after each session.

Woman drinking smoothie

Before working out

Before exercise, you need to prepare your body so that it can perform at its best and produce the desired results. It’s important to get the nutrition you need and consume it in small amounts so that the stomach doesn’t fill up and prevent us from performing at a high level. Some recommended foods include: green smoothies and nuts.

After working out

Once you’ve finished your routine, it’s important to replenish the body with the nutrients it lost in the process. To this end, you should start with a moderate amount of liquid in order to re-hydrate. Then, choose easy-to-digest foods that are high in protein. Avoid excessive sugars and fats. If you work out in the evening, click here for a selection of healthy dinners.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.