5 foods to eat before your workout

Document Date Posted: 31/07/2022-09:42AM

Why eat before a workout?

If you’re often struggling to make it through your workout, feeling fatigued at the end of it, or taking longer to feel energetic again, the fix could be as simple as eating a meal before you start exercising.

Eating before a workout helps to fuel your body and provide the staying power you need for exercise.

Wondering what foods you need to eat before working out or if you need to eat at all? The answer depends on your training or fitness goals, whether you’re an elite athlete or a beginner. Energy needs will differ between all these groups and affect what you need to eat and how much before the workout.1

Protein and carbohydrates to fuel your body

The general rule according to experts is to eat a meal rich in protein and healthy carbohydrates 2-3 hours before exercising to fuel your body.2

The best pre-workout meals balance protein and carbohydrates to release energy slowly and help your body build muscle.

Eating a protein-rich meal or drinking a protein shake after your workout helps your muscles repair and recover.

Is it ok if I don’t eat before a workout?

Everyone is different. You might prefer exercising on an empty stomach while others might prefer eating a light meal or using a supplement-based drink. The key is to experiment and track what works better for you in terms of performance, endurance and of course helping you hit your fitness or weight management goals.

Is eating protein before a workout good?

Protein is essential in helping your muscles repair and recover. Interestingly, studies have shown that eating protein alone (20-30 grams) or with carbohydrates before exercising can help you increase performance and improve the amount of muscle mass gained from resistance training.3

Eating protein before exercising will also help you feel fuller for longer preventing post-workout binge eating.

5 foods to eat before a workout

What foods should you eat before a workout that’ll give you the most energy and benefits? Below are some easily available and quick to prepare meals to add to your fitness regime.


A banana is usually a popular choice for many people. It’s fresh, quick to eat and convenient especially if you’re running low on time. Its carbs are easy to digest and provide energy without that heavy or overly full feeling.  Bananas also contain potassium, an essential salt, which may help to prevent your muscles from cramping and replenishes the salt you lose through sweat.4

Peanut butter sandwich

This tasty meal fuels you with protein, and the carbohydrates from the bread provide you with energy. Choose organic peanut butter and wholemeal bread (not white bread) for a slow release of energy as you exercise.4

Allergic to peanuts? Try butter made from sunflower seeds instead or other nut butters.


A brekkie favourite, oatmeal is easy to prepare and tastes good either on its own or mixed up with berries, fruit, nuts and low-fat milk for added nutrition.

With complex carbohydrates, oatmeal provides a slow release of energy as you work out. Berries, nuts and low-fat milk will provide antioxidants, good fats and vitamins. Add some protein powder to your oatmeal if you need to boost the protein content.


If you’re running low on time or prefer a lighter meal before your workout, you can’t go wrong with a smoothie. Deliciously versatile, it can be made with low-fat milk, or plant-based milk like almond or oat milk. Simply add any fruits you have like banana, kiwi, berries, blend and drink it to fuel your body ahead of your workout.


Delicious and creamy, yoghurt is high in protein, calcium, vitamins, and probiotics. Choose plain, and not flavoured yoghurts (as these are high in sugar), add fruits or nuts, granola and sprinkle on chia seeds. The healthy sugars in the yoghurt act as a source of energy for your body. Plus yoghurt is light and easy to digest which means it won’t slow your digestion down as you work out.

If you prefer drinking formulated products instead of eating meals or are short on time, pre-workout supplements can be a quick and convenient way to get the energy you need for your session.

XS™ Pre-Workout Boost Melonade

XS™ Pre-Workout Boost Melonade is an energising blend of essential nutrients helping to deliver sustained energy and increased endurance to get you through your workout.

It helps prepare your body for exercise, and to support sustained energy and increased endurance to help avoid the post-workout low.

XS™ Pre-Workout Boost Melonade contains a good source of carbohydrates in the combination of sucrose, fructose, maltodextrin and dextrose. Carbohydrates serve as the body’s preferred energy source, making carbohydrate intake before exercise important to help sustain exercise performance.

Each serve provides you with 114mg of caffeine derived from natural sources such as guarana and green coffee. This caffeine boost helps to provide your body with an instant boost of energy and helps you perform for longer.

XS™ Pre-Workout Boost Melonade is recommended for:

  • Anyone taking part in endurance activities (we define endurance as being a training session or event which is longer than 60 minutes).
  • Anyone wanting to get more out of their training session.

    How to use XS™ Pre-Workout Boost Melonade

    • Add 3 level scoops (13g) to 350mL of cold water. Stir until dissolved and consume 20-30 minutes before a workout.
    • Do not consume more than 1 serve in a 24 hour period.


      • Not suitable for children under 15 years of age or pregnant women. Should only be used under medical or dietetic supervision.
      • Formulated Supplementary Sports Food.
      • Excess consumption may cause a laxative effect.
      • This product is not a sole source of nutrition and should be consumed in conjunction with a nutritious diet with an appropriate physical training or exercise program.
      • If used during exercise, the food should be consumed according to directions to avoid the possibility of gastro-intestinal upset. The food must also be consumed with an appropriate fluid intake.
      • Store in a cool, dry place.
      • Contain: Caffeine


        1. https://theconversation.com/exercise-nutrition-whether-you-should-eat-before-or-after-a-workout-depends-on-your-fitness-goals-150098

        2 https://health.clevelandclinic.org/what-to-eat-before-and-after-a-workout/

        3 https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/eat-before-workout#:~:text=Many%20studies%20have%20documented%20the,9%20%2C%2010%20%2C%2011%20).

        4 https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/ss/slideshow-foods-for-workout