Trying to work out on an empty stomach can be an awful experience. It can leave you feeling lightheaded and woozy when you want to be on your A game. On the other hand, a heavy meal prior to working out can leave you tired and in need of a nap. Hitting the right balance can be tricky, so that's why you should know about the one food to eat before working out. It's tasty, almost universally loved, and unlikely to make you sick mid-workout.
Behold, the humble banana. This fruit with a fun name might be the most underrated workout fuel ever. As an easily digested carbohydrate, bananas are a great choice for pre-workout fuel, according to BuzzFeed. Remember: bananas have the good kind of carbohydrate. Additionally, bananas are packed with potassium, a mineral that's often sweated out during workouts, as explained by Redbook. In this case, snacking on a banana might help you store up on this essential mineral before you work it out of your system. Lastly, eating bananas may also help improve your recovery time, as noted by a study of cyclists in the Journal of Proteome Research. Who knew this ubiquitous fruit could become your favorite workout buddy?
Not to mention, there are about a zillion ways to enjoy your banana snack. If you don't have a lot of time to fuel up before your workout, then you can chow down on a banana just minutes beforehand. If you need something more filling, then chop up your banana and put it on some peanut butter toast with a dash of cinnamon, as suggested in Fitness. That combo will help you power through almost any workout. Lastly, bananas can form the base of just about every smoothie combination imaginable. Even if you aren't a die-hard banana fan, pairing it with strongly flavored berries or kiwis will almost totally mask the flavor.
Whether you're headed to Zumba class or training for a half marathon, bananas are the perfect workout fuel. So take a quick minute to chow down on bananas prior to your next exercise session. Your body (and potassium levels) will thank you.