What to Eat Before a Workout to Optimize How Your Body Builds Muscle and Burns Fat


According to sports nutritionist, Rebecca Scritchfield, eating the right meal around your training is vital to your progress. In fact, nutrition has a significant impact on your results. Researchers have found that what you eat before, during, and after a workout session can make the difference between achieving your workout goals and falling short. This article provides a comprehensive overview of what to eat before a workout to optimize how your body burns fat and builds muscle.


Elizabeth Quinn, a sports medicine expert, states carbohydrates are considered your body’s preferred fuel source. This does not mean that you should eat plates of mashed potatoes throughout the day. In fact, you need to fuel your body so that it is able to train at its best. Every gram of carbohydrate consumed should be used immediately to restore the glycogen content. You do not want the carbohydrate being stored as fat in your cells. Make sure you eat the majority of carbohydrates shortly before your working out. Complex carbohydrates such as stone-rolled oats and sweet potatoes are a great source of fuel while working out. Both help burn fat faster and build muscle mass. The average person can benefit from 40 grams of complex carbohydrates before they train.


Fast-absorbing proteins or whey protein is another important component in a diet before a workout session. Researchers at Baylor University, have found that consuming whey protein before working out helps individuals to obtain better results from their training sessions than those who use other protein sources or no proteins at all. This is most likely due to the anabolic and anti-catabolic signaling effects of Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs), such as leucine, present in whey protein. Pre-workout protein intake can increase your Resting Energy Expenditure (REE) aka Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) by 6.5% up to 48 hours. When the body runs out of carbohydrates, it turns to amino acids for fuel. Amino acids will be broken down quickly and converted to sugar during a process that is known as gluconeogenesis.


Creatine monohydrate is another essential item to be taken before a workout session. There are many creatine monohydrate supplements on the market for this purpose. The body has three ways of developing ATP, which is the ultimate energy source that the body relies on. Where a more intense workout like weightlifting is concerned, the body will use creatine phosphates to create energy. Two and a half grams of creatine supplementation will provide greater stores of energy to the body. This helps you workout more intensely and burn fat quickly.

Beta-Alanine is another effective nutritional supplement that is suggested before a workout session. It helps conserve muscular energy when the body is working at optimum levels. Research shows that this supplement can increase muscle carnosine content which helps provide effective weight loss and muscle building results during high-intensity training sessions. This supplement will also help improve the performance of an athlete during his/her workout sessions.  

Feed your body well before a workout to get the results you are after, building muscle and burning fat quickly and efficiently.



Hobson, R. M., Saunders, B., Ball, G., Harris, R. C., & Sale, C. (2012, January 24). Effects of β-alanine supplementation on exercise performance: A meta-analysis. Retrieved April 21, 2016, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3374095/

How Carbohydrates Provide Energy for Exercise. (2016, April 7). Retrieved April 21, 2016, from http://sportsmedicine.about.com/od/sportsnutrition/a/Carbohydrates.htm

Scritchfield, R. (2012, September 15). Facts and Myths About Fueling Up Before Your Workout. Retrieved April 21, 2016, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/15/workout-eating-before-after_n_1885016.html

Willoughby, D., Stout, J., & Wilborn, C. (2006, September 20). Effects of resistance training and protein plus amino acid supplementation on muscle anabolism, mass, and strength. Retrieved April 21, 2016, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16988909

About the Author

Dan Carver is the creator of http://workoutsupplementreviews.com/, a site devoted to providing up to date, unbiased reviews of everything you need to enhance your workout routines and reach your fitness goals fast.

The post What to Eat Before a Workout to Optimize How Your Body Builds Muscle and Burns Fat appeared first on ISOLATOR FITNESS BLOG.

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