Aside from the obvious need to keep your body hydrated before, during and after your kettlebell workout with water, it is important that you FUEL your body in order to maximize the benefits of your workout.
One to Two Hours Before (if you’re up that early!)
Carbs with a little bit of protein (keep it under 200 calories). Good examples: cereal with skim milk, a banana, trail mix, etc. This mixed protein-carb snack will help you feel satisfied and fueled and may also help reduce muscle soreness.
15 to 30 Minutes Before
If you only have 15 to 30 minutes before your kettlebell workout, choose a snack that is simple to digest, like a tablespoon of raisins, a few saltine crackers, an eight-ounce sport drink, or a small serving of applesauce.
Within 30 minutes of finishing a workout, you need to consume protein. This will help reduce muscle soreness, and, since your body's metabolic rate is higher after a workout, it will give it the fuel it needs to recover. Ideally, your “post-workout” meal should be liquid, such as a whey protein shake (a liquid meal digests faster than solid food). Other good options include chocolate milk or yogurt (add an energy bar if you're famished or had a really intense workout), or cottage cheese with a banana or pineapple.
Why you should consume protein after your workout
Consuming protein after your workout provides the amino acids necessary to rebuild muscle tissue that is damaged during intense, prolonged exercise. It can also increase the absorption of water from the intestines and improve muscle hydration. Protein supplies your body with many nutrients including iron, vitamin E, zinc, and magnesium. In addition, protein is the powerhouse that helps your body build strong bones, develop muscles, and healthy skin. The amino acids in protein can also stimulate the immune system, making you more resistant to colds and other infections.
Add these great proteins in your every day diet!
- Fish, such as salmon, tilapia, tuna, or halibut
- Chicken or turkey (preferably skinless white meat)
- Ground beef with less than 10 percent fat
- Pork tenderloin