Eat Well After Spring Exercise

While many people have a dietary plan, there are times when it can and should change according to circumstances, not least seasonal factors.

Some of these are straightforward; such as the availability of fresh summer fruits in July and August. But there are less direct, yet important, ways to think about eating now spring is here and the lockdown is easing.

While exercise was already a legitimate reason to go out, the loosening of the rules means it is now possible to go further. That might mean taking much longer walks, or you could run or cycle greater distances. You might even head a few miles to the hills, especially if you live near a national park.

All this should have implications for your diet. True, the exercise will help build up stamina and muscle, as well as contributing to weight loss, and anything sugary you consume will be burned off.

However, while much attention is paid on what to eat before exercise for slow-burn energy (such as pasta) and during it for fast-burn energy (like bananas or mango), sometimes recovery food is neglected. This is where your diet meal prep can be carefully focused.

A key thing to consider is the glycogen stores in your muscles. These will be diminished by your energetic activity, be it a work-out in the gym or a day up a mountain. That means you need carbs and protein in your next meal. Carbs help you recover and protein repairs minor muscle damage.

Good cabs include dark green leafy veg, sweet potatoes, rice, pasta and fruit, while good protein options include egg, fish, chicken, fruit or Greek yoghurt. You can also eat some good fats, like avocado and nuts, which won’t add to the waistline.

Crucially, you should eat this meal within an hour of finishing your activity, as your metabolism will be in its optimal state at that time.

So when you are getting meal ingredients delivered to your home, make sure it is just the right thing if you plan a day of strenuous activity.