Who doesn’t like a good sandwich? They’re quick, easy to make, and taste damn good to boot.
If you could have something as convenient and tasty as a sandwich that also helped to burn fat and improve performance you’d probably want to know what it was, right?
Well, I’ve got good news for you.
See, good nutrition doesn’t have to be complicated.
Regardless of the myths and dogma propagated by the media and various fitness outlets, the reality is optimal nutrition is extremely simple.
And to help you understand how simple it truly is, I’m going to share with you the best sandwich for fat loss and performance.
The Best Sandwich for Fat Loss and Performance
If you’re expecting a detailed recipe you’re in for a surprise.
See…this isn’t a real sandwich.
This is a proverbial sandwich to help you remember the best foods to eat (and when to eat them) before and after working out.
As a nutrition coach with an extraordinarily high client success rate, I use this trick with all of my clients which makes over-complicated nutritional strategies very easy to understand and implement.
Before we discuss what to eat, let’s talk about when to eat for fat loss and performance.
When Should You Eat for Fat Loss and Performance?
Our clients and I eat roughly 1-3 hours before we workout and 1-3 hours after we workout.
Or, as I like to say, we “sandwich” our workouts with pre and post-workout meals.
See what I did there ;)
Keep in mind, the 1-3 hour guideline is exactly that…a guideline.
It is NOT a steadfast rule that absolutely must be adhered to lest your muscles fall off and the scale jumps 20lbs.
Instead, this is a general recommendation that can be tailored to your individual needs.
Are you insanely busy and only have the opportunity to eat 30-45min prior to your workout?
That’s totally fine. In that case you might want to make it a small(er) meal so you aren’t overly stuffed during your training session.
Do you not have the opportunity to eat within 3-hours of your workout?
No problem. You can either try to have a big(er) meal as close to that 3-hour window as possible OR sip on a protein shake during your training session. Either option is 100% effective.
Your Takeaway: Try to eat 1 meal roughly 1-3 hours before your workout and another meal about 1-3 hours after your workout. Use the nutrition guidelines below to get the most out of your meals.
What Foods Should You Eat for Fat Loss and Performance?
Another highly debated topic and one that’s sorely overcomplicated.
To make it as simple as possible, here are my general recommendations in the order of most-to-least important:
- Protein: This is the single-most important component of pre & post workout nutrition. If nothing else, make sure you eat some form of protein before and after strength training. And it doesn’t have to be a protein shake (although it could be if you like them); you can have any form of protein including chicken, beef, turkey, tuna, salmon, greek yogurt, beef jerky, and eggs. These are all fantastic sources of protein and can help to boost fat loss and performance when eaten sufficiently pre and post workout.
- Fruits and/or Veggies: I don’t need to explain why fruits and veggies are good for you. Just know that having a piece of fruit and/or some veggies (think grilled chicken salad with an apple on the side prior to strength training is a phenomenal way to burn fat and boost performance.
- Carbohydrates: Commonly demonized as the most fattening of foods, carbohydrates are not only NOT fattening…when eaten in moderation they can even help improve fat loss and performance. That being said, it’s very easy to over-do it on carbs so if you’re trying to lose a couple pounds I recommend sandwiching your workouts (see what I did there?) with carbohydrates and limiting them the rest of the day. Some good carbohydrate sources include oatmeal, potatoes, quinoa, and whole wheat/grain bread.
Your Takeaway: Before and after working out make sure to eat a protein-rich meal with some fruits and/or veggies and a small-to-moderate amount of carbohydrates. Below I’ve provided you with a couple sample meals my clients and I eat on a regular basis.
4 Sample Pre & Post Workout Meals for Fat Loss and Performance
So far we’ve covered the concepts and general knowledge but often times we get lost in the practical application of information, so below I’ve provided 4 sample meals my clients and I eat pre & post workout on a regular basis.
- Grilled chicken salad (protein & veggies) with an apple (fruit) and half of a sweet potato (carbs)
- 1 serving of greek yogurt (protein) with mixed berries (fruit)
- 3-egg omelet (protein) with oatmeal (carbs) and melon (fruit)
- 1 protein shake in water (protein) with 1 banana (fruit)
No expensive supplements.
No “magical” foods.
Just following the simple guidelines outlined above.
The best part?
They’re easy to follow, relatively inexpensive, and these meals actually taste good!
Optimal pre and post workout nutrition is truly that simple.
It isn’t nearly as complicated as the media makes it out to be.
Eat your protein.
- Eat your fruits & veggies.
- And have some carbohydrates in moderation.
- Simple as that.
Have any questions?
Shoot ‘em my way to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll get back to you asap.