Foods to Eat Before, During, and After a Pilates Workout

Foods to Eat Before, During, and After a Pilates Workout

Feb 22, 2024Jonathan Englert

Did you know that Pilates is the fastest-growing form of exercise in Australia with a growth rate of 250% each year? That should come as no surprise, given that it’s good for just about every part of you – it will boost core strength, posture, flexibility and balance.

It’s also proven to enhance quality of life and reduce rates of depression. And it’s a form of exercise that just about everyone can do, being readily adaptable to all ages and fitness levels. 

You will earn a good sweat during a Pilates routine, and you will put your muscles through some strain. That’s why it’s important to eat the right things on a day when you have Pilates. 

The good news? So much of what you need to make the most of your Pilates routine is right there in your Good & Fugly weekly box.

Before Pilates

Before you start your Pilates session, you want to eat something that will give you a solid boost of energy and prevent hunger, but not something that will sit on your stomach and make you feel “heavy” or “bloated”. 

As such, the best foods to eat before Pilates are those that contain lean proteins and complex carbohydrates, which provide sustained energy that will last you the hour or so session, and additionally keep your blood sugar stable. Some good examples of pre-Pilates meals are:

  • A piece of fruit with yogurt
  • Oatmeal with almond milk
  • A turkey and cheese sandwich
  • A smoothie made with protein powder, fruit, and almond milk

You should also drink plenty of water before your workout, as hydration is essential for your muscles and joints. Aim to drink at least a glass or two of water 30 minutes before your Pilates class.

And make sure you take a bottle of water to class as well! You’re going to need it.

During Pilates

During your Pilates workout, you don’t need to eat anything, even if you have a break midway through (most Pilates classes don’t), as your body will be using the energy from your pre-workout meal. 

But that water bottle you brought to class is essential to keep close at hand. Pilates is designed to get a good sweat going, and you should make sure you keep your fluids up throughout. 

If you are a heavy sweater, then it might be worth considering bringing a sports drink as well, as the electrolytes and salt in those can help prevent cramping. 

After Pilates

After the workout, recovery and repairing the muscles is the name of the game. This means you want to get a good hit of protein and complex carbohydrates, just like before the workout, but you can have something a little heavier now that your body will be at rest for a while.  

Some examples of post-Pilates meals are:

  • A chicken and quinoa salad
  • A turkey sandwich on whole-wheat bread
  • A scrambled egg with spinach and cheese
  • A bowl of Greek yogurt with granola and berries

Keep drinking the water, too, as rehydration is going to be important. You can also add some lemon juice or a pinch of salt to your water to enhance hydration and balance your pH levels.

One thing to keep in mind is that your body is likely going to crave some snacks throughout the day after a Pilates workout. This is fine and natural, since you’ve put your body through a lot to work it out. You shouldn’t deny yourself, as going hungry after exercise can slow recovery. 

However, rather than indulging in junk food or highly processed quick eats, prepare some Good & Fugly snacks before you exercise, so you can munch on those, guilt-free, through the day. 

Best of luck with the workout! One of the best things about Pilates is that you’ll feel the results almost immediately.

More articles