Workout is important, but it is not everything. You have to get your body prepared with protein and glycogen before and after each day spent in the gym.

Prepare the foundation for your successful workout filling your arsenal of complex carbs, protein and fat. Get creative with your meals and feed your body with the right foods pre- and post-workout. Follow the articles below and be prepared to just pull the trigger to work out.

peanut butter and jelly sandwichPB&J sandwich is something where you can't go wrong. The peanut butter will supply you with eight grams of protein, and just enough fat to help boost testosterone levels before a heavy lifting session. Simple sugars and complex carbs from the jelly and bread will provide you with a consistent amount of energy for the duration of your workout. Bonus: toss in a sliced banana for a boost of potassium—preventing any muscle cramps.

salmon and sweet potato recipe

Post-workout, your body and muscles are starved for protein and nutrients. The lean protein in salmon will fuel your hard-trained muscles while the vegetables help to replenish your glycogen system.

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A protein shake is always the go-to method for filling your tank, and it’s easy to throw together when you’re on the run. Consider tossing in some cayenne pepper to the mix, as it contains the compound capsaicin, which can increase energy levels and help burn fat.

Loaded with protein and omega-3 fatty acids, tuna can work to reduce any inflammation post-workout – giving your joints that extra cushioning it needs. Look to buy canned tuna in water instead of oil. The reason: water and oil don’t mix. So when you’re draining out the water-packed tuna, precious omega-3s won’t be lost.


The only time to toss back some junk food carbs is 15 to 30 minutes prior to your workout when you need that quick fix. Did you know that up to fifty grams of carbs get burned during a heavy lifting session? So keeping your glycogen levels topped off will enhance your performance and prevent fatigue. And unknown to many, junk food carbs can give you that pump because it creates an insulin spike. When those fast-digesting sugars get absorbed into the blood stream, insulin levels will increase —ultimately widening your blood vessels.

Here's one cool fact: bodybuilders will eat candy before a competition to get that pump and look more vascular.

chocolate milk

It’s an old school recovery method that still works today. Chocolate milk has water, protein, and sugar – all of which your body needs post-workout. The bonus: a delicious, thirst-quenching drink now replaces any electrolytes that were lost while you were sweating.

fruit salad

The simple sugars from the fruit will give you a boost of energy while the quinoa will keep your insulin levels in check mid-workout. As for the avocado, it will feed your body with healthy fats for amped up t-levels, and prevent inflammation post-workout.

Chicken Cheesesteak Pizza

Buffalo wings and pizza – possibly the best combo ever created. But this pizza is high in protein, clocking in at 55 grams, and it only takes 15 minutes to make. Made with a whole-wheat pizza crust, this pizza will help regulate blood sugar levels because it contains 10 grams of fiber.


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