The hours before training are important; the meal you consume can influence quite profoundly how well you perform during your training session.  It is important to consume an easily digested low fat, CHO based meal, 2-3 hours before training. (read more) Having a snack (eg: 2 slices toasted peanut butter) prior to your training session is a good option.  Remember you want this meal to be low in fat so it is quickly digested and absorbed into our system.  This will also ensure you don’t start exercising with a full stomach.  Secondly, don’t forget that staying hydrated is of the utmost importance.  Water or a sports drink is the best option in the hour before training.  A good way of judging your hydration state is by taking note of the amount and colour of your urine.  If you produce plenty of urine of light colour then you are well hydrated and ready for exercise.


During training staying hydrated with fluids (water is OK) is again crucial.  If maintaining, or gaining muscle mass is of real importance then we would recommend consuming a sports drink (500-1000ml) during each weights session. Otherwise water is fine unless the session is long, in which case you should use a sports drink.  If you are exercising for an extended period in hot and humid conditions your performance will suffer unless you employ specific hydration strategies.  Your trainer of nutritionist can assist you by designing a specific rehydration strategy should require one.  Remember, for hard training athletes’ water is the most important nutrient!


Remember that essentially straight after training you are starting to prepare for your next training session.  Your muscles need fuel in the form of CHO’s and protein to repair and replenish the muscles.  An Energade is not enough.  This is merely a good first step.  Consume some food within the first thirty minutes after you finish exercising, then again a larger snack or meal within 2 hours. This is absolutely crucial to your long-term performance during training and matches, and also your continual improvement as an athlete.

Remove the problems and find the solutions!  This comes down to preparation, organization, and some basic food knowledge.