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Pre Workout Routines: The Official Guide

Everything you need to know!

Here at SmoothieBox, we love sharing hints and tips to help you get the most out of your smoothies! 

By optimizing your pre workout routine you can increase your energy levels and decrease the risk of injury.

In our Ultimate Guide to Pre Workouts, we'll tell you everything you need to know to supercharge your pre workout routine.

Pre workout stretching

Most people fail to understand the relevance of pre workout stretching when engaging in their routine exercises. Mostly, they stretch after the workout or engage in one or two forms of stretching before exercising. This usually occurs because they are unfamiliar with pre workout stretching benefits, vital for body health. Here are the top 5 benefits of pre workout stretching you should know.

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1. Improved Oxygen Flow

When you stretch before workouts, you tend to allow more oxygen to flow into the muscles. Your muscles can experience pain, aches, and tension when there is inadequate oxygen flow while exercising. Several problems are associated with a lack of oxygen, such as back, knee, and hip aches. Hence, pre workout stretching eliminates such instances by supplying sufficient oxygen to the muscles even when you stretch for 15 minutes.

2. Prolonged Workouts

The purpose of stretching is to loosen muscles and tendons that often results in muscle fatigue. Warming up before exercising tends to provide body flexibility, mostly when you have spent several hours on your desk or couch. Notably, this form of stretching targets dormant parts of your body to make them function normally. You hence get to burn calories for longer when your exercise.

3. Relieves Tight Muscles

Exercising with tight muscles results in various complications during and after your workout session. Doing a basic 90-degree test pose by pulling your leg to the upper body for some time can significantly ease tight muscles. Such pre workouts improve flexibility while helping you alleviate tight and tense hamstrings. Sequentially, you avoid severe knee and leg aches.

4. Prevents Injuries

Lack of adequate supply of oxygen in your muscles causes the inability of muscle elongation. Stretching provides flexibility and prepares your mind about different exercises you are yet to engage in during your workout. This promotes coordination between your mind, muscles, and training. Besides, you are unlikely to experience muscle rip and tear instances, which usually cause workout injuries. Such a benefit is vital for people who need to engage in constant practice without setbacks emerging due to injuries.

5. Provides More Energy

Starting your workout without adequate stretching makes you feel tired and lethargic due to the accumulated blood within your muscles. Pre workout stretching helps nourish muscles and improve blood flow to the brain. Your muscles also become active, leading to increased energy essential for completing your workout readily.

Multiple types of pre workout stretching such as static, dynamic, and active stretching, helps you improve your exercise routine. It is also a critical element when exercising because it prevents injuries associated with working out while giving your muscles more energy.

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Our top tips for a healthy pre-workout routine

Best pre workout foods

It is essential to pick appropriate foods to consume when preparing to train in the gym, on the field or out on the road. Below are 10 pre workout meals and snacks to eat before training.

1. Banana with peanut butter and honey

Typically, bananas are considered natural power bars because they are packed with carbohydrates and potassium. Combining this with nut butter and drizzle honey as a sweetener helps you gain optimal nerve and muscle function for better performance.

2. Oatmeal with Milk and Fresh Fruits

This is an excellent food for endurance exercises as it contains low glycemic properties than quick-cooking oats. Oats release sufficient carbohydrates gradually throughout the practice to train harder for longer. It also accompanies Vitamin B, suitable for breaking down carbohydrates into energy.

3. Whole Fruit Smoothie

Fruits offer simple sugars easily digested by the body to provide ready energy. You can create a combination of any smoothie based on your preferred choice of fruits. Avocados, banana, almond milk, and frozen berries smoothie is a great start.

4. Apple with Almond Butter and Raisins

Raisins are an excellent source of simple sugars, while apples provide fibers to keep you active throughout your exercise. When broken down, they provide adequate energy, which helps you boost your workout performance.

5. Nut Butter Energy Balls

You can make your energy balls from no-bake recipes that provide great insights. Use nut butter, honey, protein powder, oats, and some dark chocolates to prepare nut butter energy balls. Consuming these foods helps you get adequate energy for your workout.

6. Homemade Granola Bar

You can make granola bars using ancient grains, seeds, little dried fruit, or wholesome carbs. With several protein bars available, choose any of them, and prepare for your workout readily. This helps you get more energy and strength during your training.

7. Fruit and Greek Yogurt

Combining fruits and Greek yogurt gives the necessary carbohydrates and proteins essential for fueling your body. Carbohydrates from fruits often break down faster to provide energy, while proteins are stored for longer to prevent muscle damage. It is a perfect pre workout food for intense training.

8. Trail Mix

If you are training for muscle mass, considering trail mix with nuts is vital due to its high-fat content. Moreover, it comes with proteins and calories suitable for building your muscles. Trail mix is not recommended for those training to lose weight.

9. Grilled Chicken, Broccoli, and Sweet Potato

Another great pre-workout food option for building muscle mass is grilled chicken, broccoli, and sweet potatoes. It is also a great pre workout food if you need to train hard, though it is more of a meal than a snack.

10. Veggie Omelet

Consuming a classic omelet before hitting the gym after breakfast is a great option. Eggs offer the highest bioavailable proteins. 

Proper pre workout nutrition is vital for people training regularly for athletic performance, strength, endurance and general fitness.

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Try out 5 pre-workout smoothies for running

Pre workout foods for vegans

Pre-workout nutrition is critical for people exercising regularly, and vegan people are no exception. Animal-based pre workout snacks dominate the workout industry though plant-based alternatives are on the rise. As a vegan, you need vegan-based pre workout snacks that easily add value to your exercising routine. The following are 5 pre workout snack ideas for vegans.

1. Dates

Dates are a great option of snacks for vegans because they are sweet and pack natural sugars that give you a quick energy boost. Having these snacks in Bulk is essential because they are cheap and straightforward than most vegan pre workout snacks. Take two or three dates, chew them down, and you are good to go. Dates are practical and instant snacks full of sweetness but essential for enhancing your workout performance.

2. Banana with Peanut Butter

Bananas are another suitable snack for vegans to get the strength they need to exercise. Slice a banana or two and add a tablespoon of peanut butter. This snack gives you adequate carbohydrates, fiber, a bit of protein, and fast to prepare adequately for your next training session. Bananas are an excellent substitute for animal products precisely due to the high potassium and carbohydrate content.

3. Smoothies

Smoothies are among the most popular vegan pre workout snack as it takes a few minutes to prepare. This enables you to fuel your workout routine regardless of the type of fruit combination at hand. You can combine mango, banana, and plant-based milk or consider other available alternatives you prefer. Using plant-based smoothies are most recommended primarily due to increased energy, makes you focused, and gives you a sense of readiness.

4. Oatmeal with Protein Powder

Though it can be used as a ready meal to satisfy your appetite, oatmeal can be used as a snack to fuel your training.

5. Chocolate Vegan Ra Pudding

This is a creamy and healthy vegan pre workout snack consisting of raw cacao powder and avocado. It lacks sugar or dairy hence being diabetic-friendly for those looking to engage in intense workouts. You can quickly blend it for 30 seconds and have an excellent animal-free snack suitable for your training.

Conclusion

Vegans can face problems trying to find the right pre workout snack to take when preparing for their regular exercises. Here are some of the best ideas to consider to fuel your workout routine without animal products.

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What are the  best pre-workout smoothies for women

Pre workout supplements

Some people depend on pre workout supplements to fuel their workout routines, while others can barely tolerate the coffee's taste. It is no secret that athletes have made it a habit of consuming caffeinated pre workout products every time they hit the gym. Whether you are using pre workout supplements or not, it is useful to learn their pros and cons.

Pros of Pre Workout Supplements

Offers Different Ready-Nutrients

Besides pure caffeine, most pre workout supplements accompany various nutrients: creatine monohydrate, amino acids, electrolytes, and Vitamin B. Because of their value in sports nutrition, supplements deliver all these nutrients seamlessly under a single product. However, ensure you take the right quantity when preparing for your workout.

Keeps You Alert

Supplements make an individual alert and focused throughout the workout session. Sequentially, this allows you to concentrate on the immediate exercise; hence, preventing instances of injuries. Studies show that being focused and agile during training helps people practice harder for longer while encouraging muscle recovery.

Provides More Strength

When you engage in intense training, you tend to use more anaerobic energy, leading to muscle aches and cramps. Supplements act as a substitute to provide power in instances where there is no oxygen. Notably, it reduces subjective injuries while keeping your body performing at higher intensities.

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Cons of Pre Workout Supplements

Risky and Artificial Ingredients

Selected pre workout supplements are made artificially and usually accompany particular colors and sweeteners. Such supplements can contain dangerously stimulating ingredients like dimethylamylamine, resulting in a range of health issues. Though most of them are banned across different countries, they are still available in the market.

Overstimulation

Feeling jitter is common among pre workout users as the use of caffeine-rich and other supplements stimulate the central nervous system. When the central nervous system fails to use all the energy induced, it leads to a shaky and tingling sensation, which can be uncomfortable. This may lead to increased heart rate, potentially resulting in exacerbation of preexisting heart conditions. If you are unsure about your supplements, always use half the quantity recommended.

Dehydration

Pre workout supplements have some features of diuretics, which stimulate kidneys to release more water. Such actions often lead to hastened dehydration than when working out without using supplements. You can curb dehydration risks by including electrolytes and drinking more water.

Using pre workout supplements can help you complete your exercise routine facilitated by its pros. However, these products also have their downside, which may become harmful to your workout routine and overall health.

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What are the   best pre-workout smoothies for woman

Organic pre workout smoothies

Smoothies have become regular and critical nutrition for people who engage in routine workouts. Generally, this is a drink made from raw fruits, vegetables, or a combination of both using a blender. It provides ready simple sugars, carbohydrates, and other essential elements that fuel your workouts. However, it becomes tricky to make the organic pre-workout smoothie suitable for you.

Preparing Your Organic Pre Workout Smoothie

Making a smoothie drink can take many shapes depending on the ingredients used though most people focus on fruits and vegetables. Hence, you will need to prepare the perfect smoothie to energize your workout because it is the ideal pre and post-workout snack today. First, you will need to choose your types of fruits and vegetables to include in your mixture. Bananas, shredded coconuts, protein powder, mango, seeds, berries, grated apple, and nectarines are a great list of fruits.

A serving of vegetables, including spinach, zucchini, carrots, and kale, also comes in handy to make the best organic pre-workout smoothie. Furthermore, plant-based add-ins such as coconut water and plant-based milk can provide a handful of nutrients to make your smoothie even more beneficial. Once you have chosen your preferred fruits, vegetables, and extra add-ins, ensure they are fresh and clean.

Making Your Smoothie

Several organic pre-workout smoothie recipes exist but tend to take the same shape. Begin by cleaning your fruits, vegetables, and extra add-ins and chop them to the right size. Based on the number of smoothies you are preparing, add an adequate amount of water to mix. A small water volume can result in a concentrated drink, while more water affects the taste and nutrient concentration.

Put all your already prepared ingredients in a blender, add water, and let it run for 30 seconds. Afterward, pour it in a glass and drink your mixture. Instead of water, you can use your favorite plant milk, which also adds more value to make your smoothie more nutritious. Here is a perfect recipe to prepare your pre-workout smoothie in minutes.

Ingredients

  • One banana
  • Two teaspoonfuls of pumpkin seeds
  • Two teaspoonfuls of hemp seeds
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • One and a quarter cup of water or plant-based milk
  • One scoop plant-based protein powder
  • Quarter cup walnuts
  • Quarter cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • Two teaspoonfuls of cacao powder
  • Quarter teaspoonful maca powder
  • Quarter teaspoonful cinnamon
  • Quarter raw vanilla powder
  • Add all your constituents to a high-speed blender and let it run at maximum power for thirty seconds.
  • Pour the juice into a glass and drink.

Instructions

Smoothies are a vegan-friendly, easy to make, healthy, gluten-free option that you can drink in the morning and pre workout.

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What are the   best pre-workout smoothies for men?

Caffeine free pre workout smoothies

Besides pre-workout snacks, smoothies have become common among different people preparing for their workout routines. Generally, smoothies are easy to digest and offer ready nutrients essential for workouts. However, it can become tricky preparing the right pre-workout smoothie, especially when you need caffeine-free smoothies. Here are great ideas to make caffeine-free pre-workout smoothies.

Preparing Your Caffeine Free Pre Workout Smoothie Ingredients

Finding caffeine-free smoothie ingredients can be quite a task if you are unfamiliar with different foods' nutritional content. Selected fruits and vegetables are crucial in such instances as they contain natural ingredients without caffeine. Some of the best ingredients to consider for your caffeine-free pre workout smoothie are avocado, nuts, blueberries, leafy greens, peanuts, and coconut juice.

Caffeine is often associated with stimulating the body before working out, and some people can find it detrimental. Therefore, preparing caffeine-free smoothies comes in handy to substitute and provide the needed nutrients for your workout routine. Here is a guide for making a caffeine-free smoothie.

Choose Your Ingredients

Consider all the available caffeine-free pre workout smoothie ingredients and choose the best ones based on your preferred options. Create a combination of different fruits, vegetables, and other elements, including add-ins. Clean all your ingredients thoroughly and slice or chop them to the right size. Add an adequate amount of water, plant-based milk, or coconut juice to create a mix for your smoothie.

Blend Your Mixture

Put all your content in a blender and let it run for over thirty seconds at high speed. This ensures the mixture is well-blended and mixed adequately, essential for ease of digestion once consumed. Afterward, pour the mixture into a glass and drink. Sometimes, you may wish to prepare a batch and store it in the refrigerator for future use.

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Benefits of Consuming Caffeine Free Pre Workout Smoothies

Caffeine is characterized by stimulation of the central nervous system, resulting in increased blood flow suitable for exercising. However, it can become detrimental for some people who then turn to caffeine-free products, including smoothies. So, what are some benefits of avoiding caffeine-based smoothies, snacks, foods, and supplements?

  • Caffeine is associated with affecting sleep; hence avoiding such smoothies gives better sleep.
  • Avoiding caffeine-rich smoothies before working out helps you better absorb nutrients essential for improved performance in the gym.
  • The usage of caffeine has been noted to increase blood pressure due to its stimulatory effect. Avoiding its use tends to manage cases of blood pressure.
  • Caffeine may result in endless and unpleasant digestive problems. Consuming large quantities also affects stool. Using caffeine-free smoothies can help you have healthy digestion.

Caffeine-free smoothies accompany different benefits to users as it provides the needed nutrients while eliminating impacts of caffeine use and dependency.

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Pre workout snacks

Athletes and fitness professionals are continually searching for the right ways to perform better during their workout routines. Optimal nutrition plays a requisite part in promoting body health; hence you can perform better and meet your objectives. Unlike pre-workout food, snacks are essential for a successful training exercise. Below are the key benefits of pre-workout snacks you should know.

1. Improves Muscle Recovery

Smoothies and dates are some of the most common snacks used by people engaging in various training sessions. These snacks have simple sugars that are broken down during the exercise and provide ready energy. This enables the muscles to get more power during training, helping your muscles to recover and continue to train.

2. Better Anabolic Response

Protein-rich pre-workout snacks are essential for people looking to increase muscle mass when working out. Notably, these snacks supply the needed energy when training, especially in intense situations. However, muscle growth depends on the rate of your exercise and the training at hand. Taking a right protein-based products helps you get the essential amino acids required to repair and rebuild muscles during and after your workout.

3. Increases Strength and Energy

Snacks such as bananas are crucial in helping you get adequate carbohydrates, which are readily broken down to provide energy essential for your exercise routine. With this, you obtain sufficient muscle strength, mostly in intense training. This enables you to supply your body with the needed elements to complete your workout without cases of muscle strain and associated pains.

4. Increase Focus and Agility

Consuming the right amount of pre-workout snacks stimulates your brain while helping you become active and focused throughout the entire exercising process. Besides, you get to prepare your mind while it initiates the dynamic conversion of ingested ingredients. Though this benefit is indirect, it is essential to experience it during your workout session.

5. Increases Muscle Performance

This is often the primary benefit of pre-workout snacks as it leads to an adequate supply of essential components in the body that fuels the entire training process. Once you take a snack such as a fruit or a couple of dates, it enables you to have ready energy ideal for the training. Besides pre-workout stretching, snacks provide the needed energy, especially during anaerobic exercises. Sequentially, you get to train for longer without getting tired faster and preventing muscle aches and fatigue during and after training.

When it comes to pre-workout snacks, taking adequate amounts can help you with your entire workout routine. This approach accompanies various benefits, as mentioned above, to get your training effective and efficient.

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Our pre workout routine

Exercising is vital for general body health while mandatory for athletes and other fitness professionals to remain in shape. However, you need to have a practical workout routine that works to guarantee proper exercising. Before workouts, preparing your body for different types of exercises makes it easier and efficient. Things you do outside the gym and before exercises play a critical role in your training sessions. That said, here are our fundamental tips for a better pre-workout routine.

1. Drinks Lots of Water

Typically, the human body is over 50% water, making it a vital component of survival. Water accompanies various benefits in the body; regulating temperature, facilitating metabolism processes, brain functions, and more. During intense training, sweating and increased metabolic processes lead to water loss, demanding proper hydration before working out. Consider factors such as temperature, age, body weight, sweat rate, exercise, and sex when consuming water.

2. Get Adequate Sleep

Getting some sleep before a typical workout session is another essential component to keep fit. Many research studies have proven that a lack of adequate sleep impacts cognitive and physical performance, and training regularly is no different. Sleeping before your exercise helps you have a perfect reaction time and makes you alert, drives accuracy, and anaerobic power. Besides, several studies have shown a significant link between an increase in injuries and inadequate sleep during workouts.

3. Proper Nutrition

Fueling your body with proper nutrition accompanies various benefits besides improving your general workout performance. Essentially, the body requires three macronutrients, namely carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats. Exercise intensity often determines types of pre-workout foods o snacks to consume, allowing for proper body functioning. Like sleep and hydration, nutrition is critical; hence you need to take the right food or snack before your workout routine.

4. Pre Workout Stretching

Warming up before any exercise is critical because it helps in blood flow, which activates the muscles while promoting a range of motions. Stretching before exercising accompanies various benefits, including keeping you focused during the training, reducing injuries, and preventing muscle and joint pains and fatigue. Other several psychological gains accompany warm-ups before training, especially those engaging in intense exercises.

5. Create Your Playlist

Having your favourite tune or specific music types helps you get motivated when planning for your routine exercises. This tends to build your confidence while pumping you up and eliminating distractions that can cause injuries. Studies show that considering songs falling between 120-140 beats per minute is great for a successful training session.

 

Add collagen to your smoothies

Now you're prepared to smash your workout routines, why not add some free collagen to your next SmoothieBox? Collagen is the ideal supplement to a post workout smoothie as it aids your body's recovery after exercise. Complete the form below to receive a code for your free collagen. 

You can also check out our blog for even more hints, tips and recipes and all things SmoothieBox.

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