The Best Things To Eat Before A Workout

posted April 6, 2016

It’s 4pm and you have a 6pm workout. You are a little hungry and you know you will definitely be hungry by the time you get to the gym or your class… should you eat?


Most health and nutrition experts would say yes- but what should you reach for? Here are some ideas for pre-workout snacks that will keep you fueled without feeling full.




If a 6 am spin class is any indication, many people in Los Angeles work out first thing in the morning. Many people say that they don’t or can’t eat breakfast before a work out. Good news! You do not have to eat a full breakfast meal before a work out to have the fuel you need. You could have a small snack and then eat your full breakfast following your work out. Here are some morning snack ideas:


– Banana

– Banana with almond butter: learn how to make your own here

– Handful of almonds

– Smoothie: throw some greens, fruit, milk and yogurt and/or protein powder in the blender

– Steamed Boiled Egg

– Rice cake with nut butter

– String cheese and grapes

– An energy bar: try my recipe for homemade energy bars or choose a low sugar option like Larabar




If you have some more time between your alarm and your work out or if you enjoy a more filling meal, go for:


– Oatmeal with berries

– Toast with nut butter

– Greek yogurt and berries

– Eggs and veggies


Afternoon or Evening:


I would argue that your afternoon work out requires thoughtful meal planning throughout the day. Eating a healthy pre work out snack is great but doesn’t have quite the same impact if you have an unhealthy lunch. Try to have a whole foods based, lean lunch and then a healthy snack about an hour before your work out to give yourself the best fuel for your afternoon sweat.






– Mediterranean Salad

– Spinach salad with avocado, protein (chicken, fish, steamed boiled eggs), tomato and olive oil dressing

– Tuna, avocado, parsley, tomato, salt and pepper

– Sweet potato with chicken and kale

– Spinach salad with chicken, beets, avocado and citrus




Afternoon Snack:


– Hummus and veggies

– Apple and nut butter

– Brown rice with black beans and a little bit of salsa

– Smoothie

– Trail mix (nuts and dried fruit)

– Healthy snack bar


There is no reason why a snack cannot be just a smaller meal. For example, sometimes at work I will go to the salad bar and get a small salad of veggies and protein or a small coup of vegetable or chicken soup rather than a processed snack from the vending machine. Just because something isn’t packaged as a “snack” doesn’t mean it can’t act like one!


I would love to hear your ideas for healthy meals or snack ideas that you enjoy before a work out.



Written by Alexis from Balance Bride