by Clean Machine

Your Workout Nutritional Plan

Fresh produce fruit and vegetables

Imagine having an abundance of choices to eat as an exercise enthusiast. Now take it a step further: imagine following a plant-based diet and having to create meals and workouts solely for the purpose of your ethical choices and overall well-being. Welcome to the plant-based diet world and how to achieve proper nutrition before and after your workout.

The key is to plan, plan, plan. It may sound rudimentary if you're accustomed to schedules and healthy meals. However, proper nutrition takes a bit more preparation, especially if your program is your latest launch into new beginnings.

Pre- and post-workout meals are the cornerstone of top-notch muscle training and muscle accomplishment. If you are a seasoned fitness veteran with your meal planning, the switch to plant-based might elicit some research and proper timing. The benefits far outweigh any negatives. Let’s break it all down for you with these tips on how to effectively schedule your pre-and post-workout meals, and what are the most optimal choices for each time frame.

The Pre-Workout Meal Plan

Life can be a matter of finding the balance of work, family obligations, and exercise. Eating the proper pre-workout meal is also about finding balance. Which foods will rev up your system in such a way as to enhance your workouts? Here are simple rules to remember to accomplish your goals of the pre-workout meal:

  • Factor in the type of workout you're about to embark upon and eat enough calories that provide energy to sustain you for the duration.
  • Avoid dairy, refined sugars, processed wheat products, heavy saturated fats, and too much caffeine. In excess, any of these could wreak havoc on your digestive system and not give you the proper nourishment.
  • A ratio of complex carbohydrates, quality plant proteins, and polyunsaturated fats is a bonus for a pre-workout. 
  • Ideally, you'll want to fuel up about two hours prior to exercise. This allows enough time to digest, to access the energy of the food, and to maximize your workout.
  • Make sure you stay hydrated during your workouts. A popular way to hydrate is to add BCAA’s to your water and drink during the workout. 
  • The key is to consume easily digestible foods that won't cause digestion to slow down.

Pro athlete Korin Sutton eats a healthy diet

Pro Vegan Bodybuilder and Master Trainer Korin Sutton uses plant-based food as well as Clean Machine products to fuel up.

Let's determine the quality foods that make up this category ofpre-workout meals. We'll keep it simple, keep it nutritious, and maintain our plant-based regimen.

  1. Oatmeal - One of the most underrated pre-workout foods due to the feelings of fullness, yet oatmeal ranks at the top for energy expenditure and complex carbohydrate allotment. One cup of oatmeal with perhaps 1/4 cup of unsweetened nut milk (almond, cashew, coconut), and a handful of berries is a supreme meal prior to exercise.
  2. Peanut/almond/cashew butter on grain toast (either gluten-free or whole grain) - A tablespoon of either of the raw nut butters spread on a piece of dry toast accomplishes the carbohydrate to protein to fat ratio requirements.. 
  3. Plain yogurt with berries - A cup of yogurt made from soy, almond, or coconut milk enhanced with a few tablespoons of blueberries, strawberries, or raspberries will fire up your body after a night of fasting during sleep. Feel free to add a teaspoon of raw agave to sweeten, if desired.
  4. Plant-based protein powder drink - Choosing a vegan protein powder that satisfies the complete amino acid profile for standard protein requirements is becoming much easier to accomplish. If you're drinking a protein shake prior to your exercise and muscle session, make certain to mix with water and perhaps a banana versus nut milks. The powder itself provides enough pre-protein and carbohydrates for your meal and still allows your cellular structure to feel energy for the duration of your workout.

If you have you are working towards balancing your daily schedule, the above pre-workout meals are just the boost your body needs to meet your exercise regimen with a purpose.

The Post-Workout Meal Plan

Once your workout session has concluded, you have a two-hour window to refuel. If you are unable to eat during that time frame, bonking, or “hitting the wall” becomes more prevalent. The body simply must have food post-workout to be able to maximize your efforts for the next workout. To explain further, when you eat foods that are high in a protein/carbohydrate/fat ratioafter your session has expired, the windows close, and your body uses up what it needs to help the muscles recover. If there are any leftover nutrients, the body uses those for thefollowing workout.

Runners, cyclists, and endurance athletes experience this kind of structure more commonly. The nutrients burned during aerobic energy sessions needs to be met with stocking back up on electrolytes and food so as not to build up lactic acid in the muscles. Endurance athletes don't need a bunch of protein after a workout, they need carbohydrates.

Anaerobic athletes, sprinters, weightlifters, fast-twitch muscle activity, requires more protein post workout.

The body uses stored glycogen (energy) to power through your workout session, therefore replenishing the lost nutrients is what will benefit your body the most. Here's where you can add more quality vegan proteins and fats that were unavailable to eat during the pre-workout meal.

Clean Machine Protein Powder

To ensure yourpost-workout meal is beneficial, include the following:

  1. Yogurt protein smoothie - Crack open the plant-based protein powder, pour one scoop in a blender, add a handful of berries, 1/4 cup of orange juice, and a cup of soy/coconut/nut yogurt (unsweetened). Mix it up thoroughly and drink to your heart's content. This concoction will replace beneficial nutrients post workout.
  2. Soy/lentil/pea protein wrap with vegetables - There's a plethora of bean and pea proteins that resemble meat (and even taste like meat) if you're a diehard meat eater who's making the transition to the healthier plant-based option. Gluten-free aficionados also have a range of choices with their breads and tortillas.
  3. Chocolate/vanilla almond milk - The density of this beverage is a quick-type fix for post workouts. One cup gulped down is satisfying and sufficient.

Key Takeaway

When working towards meeting your health and fitness goals, the food you choose is a key ingredient. Your pre and post workout meals have to fuel your workout muscles alongside building and repairing them. Learn what works best for your body and stick with it.

Clean Machine
Clean Machine

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