6 Best Snacks to Eat Before a Workout

apples and cheese and crackers

Exercising on an empty stomach is just asking for trouble, but so is exercising right after you’ve scarfed a double cheeseburger with a side of curly fries. Choosing good pre-workout snacks means thinking about which foods give you the energy you need to move and also to burn fat and build muscle, so next time you’re headed to the gym/pool/spare room where your treadmill lurks, consider one of these fitness-friendly snacks to help you on your way to a healthier you.


1. Raw veggies and dip. Here’s the thing: I used to think full-fat salad dressing canceled out the effect of my virtuous vegetables, but the reality is that if a modest side of ranch will help me choose carrot sticks over breadsticks, bring on the dip.

2. Apple slices and cheese. If you’re a Fancy Lady with Fancy Tastes, by all means pair that organic grass-fed apple with your favorite artisanal cheese, but as for me, I get plenty of enjoyment from my grocery store Granny Smith and a stick of low-fat string mozzarella from the 64-pack I use for my kids’ lunches. To each her own. 

3. Yogurt with granola. In what might be the perfect combination of healthy protein and carbs, plain Greek yogurt topped with a handful of Chex Granola Mix rocks my world and gets me ready to move.

4. Smoothies. Whether you go for Banana-Strawberry Supreme or Kale-Beet Surprise, sucking down the smoothie of your choice is a great way to pack in a lot of nutrients without weighing yourself down with sluggish solids. Start with a base of yogurt or almond milk and create your own concoctions.

5. Customized oatmeal. For early-morning or cold-weather workouts, Chex gluten-free oatmeal is the perfect snack to fuel your internal fire. It’s hearty without being heavy, and you can keep it from getting boring by adding different combinations of nuts, fruits (fresh or dried), and spices. Yum.

6. Hard-boiled eggs. Cook up a batch of these at the start of the week and you’ll have a quick go-to snack that’s high in protein and essential nutrients, low in calories and saturated fat, and as easy on your budget as they are to prepare. 

What do you like to eat before you exercise?

Image ©iStock.com/dbvirago

Read More >