Knowing that food is waiting for you after a long hike is the most rewarding experience. A heated meal sounds especially enticing after munching on nuts and dried fruit all day and expending lots of calories.
You merit it, too! However, some foods will help you feel better and are better at helping you recuperate after a trek than others. Despite the fact that the hike itself ends at the trailhead, the effects it produces on your body linger much longer. In this article, we'll discuss the ideal meals to eat before, during, and after a strenuous hike.
How To Fuel Up Before A Hike
Eating well before a long hike, even the day before can make a significant difference. Consider including more carbohydrates in your meals the day before a hike to boost glycogen levels.
Glycogen is created by your body from sugar and is then stored in your muscles and liver. You can maintain your endurance by increasing your glycogen stores by ingesting more carbohydrates. Make sure to eat complex carbohydrates before your hike.
The List Of Foods To Eat Before A Trek Is As Follows:
Oatmeal: Oats release energy more gradually than processed carbohydrates, making it one of the greatest meals before a hike.
Eggs: If you like a heartier breakfast, they are great to have on the side. Just be careful not to consume too much protein. Aimee Layton, an exercise physiologist, advises limiting protein before exercising since it "takes a substantial quantity of water to digest, which can lead to dehydration and muscular cramping." After a hike, it's necessary to consume protein; however, we'll get to that later.
1-2 Liters Of Water: Water will help you start hydrating sooner. Make sure you have enough water with you on the hike to last you the entire time. Leave a bottle of water in your van for some post-hike hydration if there is no water available at the trailhead.
What To Eat While Hiking
It's important to have extra food and drink for a trek, just like when breaking in new hiking boots.
The List Of Foods To Consume When Hiking Is As Follows:
The Perfect Trail Snack: It is an energy bar because they are convenient and filled with nutrition. in particular vegan energy bars. Even if you don't feel hungry right away, take frequent breaks while trekking; your body will appreciate it.
Water: sipping on it frequently and in tiny amounts is better for you than downing a water bottle at the first sign of thirst. Aim for 32 ounces of water every two kilometers. Additionally, you might need to consume even more water if you live in a hotter climate.
Nut Butter: A lengthy climb makes nut butter's creamy, salty flavor even more delicious. On a trek, nut butters like peanut butter and others are really simple to pack. Be cautious to check the ingredient list because many businesses now provide these items without added sugar, oil, or preservatives.
These high-calorie snacks, which are primarily made of fats and protein, make you feel fuller for longer. You may replenish your long-term energy stores and stay energetic all day long by having nut butter snacks. If you don't have many protein-rich snacks on hand, peanut butter is a wonderful option because it contains the most protein of any food. Vitamins A and E, antioxidants that can lessen muscle damage, are also present in nut butters.
How To Fuel Up After A Hike
Contrary to popular belief, a hike's before and after portions are not its most crucial components.
Hikes can be very taxing on your body, depending on the terrain and distance you covered. The good news is that you now have an excuse to fuel your body's recovery by consuming a lot of nutritious food.
It's a good idea to refuel with protein, complex carbohydrates, and meals high in vitamins and nutrients after a trek or any other strenuous exercise. A smart post-hike meal includes lean protein to repair injured muscles and other bodily tissues and complex carbs to restore the glycogen in your muscles. Eat a snack or lunch no later than an hour after finishing your hike. We advise refueling with a protein energy snack if you have a long trip home from the trailhead.
Additionally, it's a good idea to include some anti-inflammatory spices in your diet to speed up your recuperation. Curry powder, turmeric, ginger, and garlic are excellent examples.
When packing for a hike, don't just throw a few odd items in your pack. Instead, before making a decision, consider your objectives and your nutritional needs. Don't forget the water, either. To avoid becoming dehydrated, you must regularly drink water and eat while walking; it's crucial to properly nourish your body.
In order to achieve your fitness and health goals, proper nutrition is crucial. Choose foods that will give your body what it needs to function but aren't loaded with unnecessary sugars or refined carbohydrates, depending on how active and fit you are.
- Kelly Pritchett, Ph.D., RD, spokeswoman, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; assistant professor, sports nutrition, Central Washington University.
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: “Timing Your Pre- and Post-Workout Nutrition.”
- American Heart Association: “Food as Fuel -- Before, During, and After Your Workouts.”
- USDA Nutrient Database.
- Mattes, R. Journal of Nutrition, September 2008.
- Barr, S. Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology, April 1999.