Before: Since SoulCycle is a HIIT workout, you want to fuel up with a snack that combines quick burning carbohydrates for energy with fast and slow burning proteins and fiber that will keep you full and provide the amino acids necessary to support and build muscle. I like to eat a Fage 2 percent plain yogurt with my favorite trail mix and a drizzle of agave nectar an hour before I teach.
After: Carbs with a little protein within a half hour to 45 minutes after an intense workout will help you rehydrate and aid in muscle recovery. I like a smoothie with vegan protein and fruits or greens in it, but something as simple as a banana and some peanut butter will do the trick.
Before: Whole wheat bagels and bananas are excellent sources of energy for long runs. If you are running outside in hot weather, you may find that you have to substitute water with a sports drink to properly rehydrate. If you're pumping iron in the gym or taking a bootcamp class, a spoonful of peanut butter and a small apple is a great choice. One serving of low fat cottage cheese and fruit (I prefer blueberries) is also an excellent choice.
After: Within 30 minutes of completing a workout, [have] protein and carbs. One of my favorites is a broccoli omelet with a small sweet potato or half an avocado with hot sauce and 2 scrambled eggs.
Before: Rest and fuel are the two elements of every fitness regiment that are most often overlooked, yet have the greatest impact on your success. In terms of fueling for pilates—or any exercise for that matter—consider what works best with your digestive system. I generally eat a fruit or protein smoothie about 90 minutes before a session.
After: Focus on hydration afterwards. Pilates is about lengthening and strengthening, so you don't want to feel bloated, distended, or uncomfortable in any way, as that will impede your natural movement and range of motion!
Before: In terms of fueling before class, I'll usually have oatmeal 1-2 hours before we a small scoop of protein and a banana. Within the 30 minutes before class, I'll go with a quick sugar for energy (especially necessary for the performance aspect of our job), usually a small muffin, croissant, cookie, etc. Its the perfect opportunity to work in that snack you would feel guilty having otherwise, because it gives you a burst of energy and allows you to perform to your highest potential. During class I'll mix in a BCAA powder with my water for extra hydration and muscle recovery. I use the Xtend brand (watermelon flavor).
After: Coming out of class, I make sure to get a protein in within 30 minutes—my favorites are quest bars, chobani yogurts, or chocolate milk. Super important to get something in within that 30 minute window!
Before: About an hour and half to two hours prior to class, eat something light that will keep your energy up throughout the entire workout. Complex carbs like oatmeal or a small apple with almond butter are perfect since your body will take longer to digest meaning you can power through the ride.
After: Ideally, choose a snack that is higher in protein than carbs. It's crucial to nourish the body with the proper nutrients to rebuild the muscle fibers you tore down. This can be anything from a protein shake, bar, or salad filled with hard boiled eggs and some quinoa.