How much you should eat before your workout depends on the type of workout that you plan on doing: high, moderate, or low intensity. If you’re going to do a low-intensity workout, don’t eat before your workout because it will just make you feel sluggish. On the other hand, for moderate to high-intensity workouts, you’ll want to have some reserve carbs in your system to perform the best.
Here are some caloric guidelines:
- If it’s 3 or 4 hours before your exercise, eating a large meal is OK (600 calories or more).
- If it’s 2 or 3 hours beforehand, a smaller meal is better (400 to 500 calories).
- If it’s 1 or 2 hours before, a liquid meal is a good choice (300 to 400 calories).
- If it’s an hour beforehand, a small snack will do (200 to 300 calories).
Try not to eat during the last hour before you begin a workout because it floods your system with too much blood sugar during those initial stages of your workout.