You can’t do English boxing, muay Thai or savate training on an empty stomach! Not eating anything before a boxing class or competition can result in a loss of energy, a decrease in the boxer’s performance, and an increased recovery time and risk of injury.
Your body doesn’t just work to build muscle and recover only when you exercise; the body does this 24/7. So if you strategically time your snacks or meals, you can give your body the fuel it needs to gain muscle, burn fat, and recover as best as it possibly can.
Boxers are athletes that have great stamina, speed, and endurance. They can be attributable to their intense training and routine of exercise. However, a third element has enabled boxers to keep their best fighting form in their diet.
Maintaining muscle mass and controlling weight loss or gain is crucial for amateur and professional boxers. That’s why they monitor their diet with a keen eye. The good thing is that a boxer’s diet is not particularly special, and it is an everyday routine that anyone can adhere to.
If you’ve ever experienced a boxing class, you’ll understand the importance of giving your body the right fuel before you go along — boxing is a full-body workout, and you need to be able to keep up! So rather than reaching for a sugary snack, there are easy and healthy options that will give you the energy you need.
Boxing burns a lot of calories, so having energy fuel is important. In addition, eating the right foods before a boxing workout help elevate your performance. Food is fuel. All athletes, especially boxers – take special care of their diet. Eating whole, healthy foods during well-timed meals is key to maximizing performance.
Following boxing training, the diet plan benefits fighters of all levels, whether you are just working out or preparing to compete. Before a boxing workout or jumping into the ring, it is critical to follow a proper diet and nutrition plan to ensure your body has the energy it needs.
These strategies for choosing the best pre-workout meal can help boxers meet the demands of this high-energy, fat-burning sport.
Boxers run early in the morning because running on an empty stomach can help boost the number of calories their body burns during the day. In addition, since most fighters run for weight control and increase their stamina, running in the morning can be highly beneficial.
Boxers should plan a meal around two (2) or three (3) hours before boxing. This gives the body enough time to begin the digestion process. After around 2-3 hours, the energy in the carbohydrates is released, giving boxers increased stamina needed for longer workouts.
Rich in vitamins and minerals, bananas make a great choice of fruit to feed your boxer. They are not only an effective antidote for stomach upset but a fantastic all-around addition to a healthy diet.
Boxers are extreme athletes, and water is their lifeline. Therefore, the importance of water hydration is at the top of the list for athletes. The right amount of water is needed before and after exercise to properly regulate body temperature, lubricate the joints and help your body provide you with vital energy.
Boxers know that the proper post-workout meal will help their bodies recover faster and strengthen their muscles. A huge part of this recovery is providing your muscles with protein so they can repair. Boxers will eat around 25-30 grams of protein within an hour after a fight to kickstart this process.
Why Should You Eat Before Boxing Workout?
Like all fighting sports, boxing, when practised regularly, demands an individualized diet. It’s not a matter of following a diet plan to lose weight or build muscle. It is more of an adjustment in the food you consume to create an optimum, well-balanced, and healthy diet. Boxers require more nutrients to fuel the energy they need for training and aid in building muscles and recovering quicker.
We’re certainly not saying that you need to sit down for a full-on meal immediately before you head off to boxing class. This wouldn’t be the best idea as you’ll likely be left feeling sluggish and uncomfortable. However, you need to make sure you give your body enough fuel to get through the workout.
Boxing is a high-intensity workout that burns a lot of energy, and going along hungry can lead to muscle loss. So make sure you snack right before you don the gloves with that in mind. Insufficient food intake before boxing classes or competing could result in the loss of energy, limiting the boxer’s performance and prolonging his recovery and the possibility of injury.
Constitution Is Important
A vital aspect of the boxer’s diet is its structure. The diet is intended to maintain muscles healthy and strong while continuously filling up the reserves in energy for a boxer via carbs and fats. However, maintaining a consistent diet of carbohydrates, protein, and fats isn’t easy because of the fluctuating supply of protein sources such as chicken and beef, lean dairy products, and fish. This is also true for fruits and vegetables.
Therefore, food supplements are required to fill in the gap in nutrition intake. Boxers recommend more information on nutritional supplements in magazines, websites for training in boxing, and boxing workout websites.
Be aware that supplements to your diet are taken to ensure that your nutritional requirements are met. It doesn’t mean that you should eliminate your diet for boxers. Supplements are most effective when used in conjunction with a healthy diet.
The ideal diet for boxers should:
- Give you energy throughout the training
- Give enough nutrients to encourage the growth of muscle and weight.
- Below, you don’t put stress on your body during digestion.
Since boxers want to achieve higher energy pre-workout, carbohydrates need to focus before training. A pre-workout meal will usually consist of:
- 50 – 60% Carbohydrates
- 10 – 30% Protein
- 20 – 30% Fat
The boxer’s diet has to be adapted to the demands of their sport. They should eat more food and not consume too excessively. It can be challenging to figure out how to manage each meal so that you don’t feel hungry yet at the same time to ensure that you don’t feel too full afterwards and feel fatigued during training.
Examples of the types of foods in a solid boxing diet plan for boxers include:
The body uses protein as a building block for muscles. During a workout, the muscles break down while they condition, intending to rebuild after the workout is done. Fit boxers use a lot of muscles when training and working out, so protein plays an important role in the pre-workout meal. Examples of protein include:
- Red meats, like beef and pork
- Poultry, like chicken and turkey
Working out takes a lot of energy. Carbohydrates replenish the glycogen stores (or sugars) depleted when exercising. Complex carbs give bodies the most nutrients because they provide vitamins and minerals lacking in simple carbohydrates like refined sugars. Providing the body with the right amount of carbohydrates before boxing helps keep blood sugar levels stable so the body can get the most out of the workout. Examples of complex carbs include:
- Whole grains
You’ll learn what works for your body over time, but try to stick to 200-300 calories per snack. Below are five quick and easy snack ideas that you can try before your next workout.
Banana is loaded with digestible carbohydrates and potassium (of course), which helps your body maintain nerve and muscle function.
Greek yogurt with fruit
Greek yogurt is packed with high-quality protein, which will carry you through your workout and beyond. Adding the fruit gives your body some quick fuel to burn during the workout.
Apple and peanut butter
An apple with a couple of tablespoons of peanut butter is a tasty carb fuel-up that will keep you going,
Whole grain bread with turkey
Whole grain bread is an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, which will give you plenty of energy. Top it off with a couple of slices of lean turkey or hard-boiled eggs for a protein boost.
Cottage cheese and fruit
Top a half-cup of cottage cheese with some blueberries or pineapple for a quick supply of energy.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of water before and after your workout. Now you might be wondering what to eat after your boxing workout. After exercise, your body needs protein to recover. After a workout, eating the right protein provides amino acids to muscles, which are necessary for repair and growth. Try the following after your next workout.
- chocolate milk
- protein shake or bar
- low-fat string cheese
- pita and hummus
Great Pre-Workout Combinations
The following food combinations are great choices before boxing:
- Fruit and nuts with Greek yogurt
- Peanut butter with apple or banana slices
- Whole grain bread with turkey or chicken
- Cottage cheese with fruit
- Pita bread with hummus
Realistically, it can be difficult to plan out meals with such a perfectly measured assortment of specialty foods. However, it is often easier and just as effective to add a quality protein shake before boxing in real life. Most boxing professionals add supplements like protein shakes to ensure they get ample calories and balanced nutrition. Protein shakes made with a good blend of ingredients are an excellent way to quickly give your body everything it needs.
During Your Boxing Workout
If you’re working out for less than an hour, the only thing you need to worry about during your workout is staying hydrated. Keep a water bottle right next to your Liteboxer so you can take quick sips between rounds. Our trainers make sure to call out reminders to drink regularly, so keep an ear open and take sips when they take sips!
For high-intensity exercises that last longer than an hour, such as a marathon, hike, or back-to-back Liteboxer workouts, for example, it’s important to snack on easy-to-eat high-carb foods when you feel low on energy. Some ideas include fruit, granola, or a low-sugar energy bar.
What To Eat On After A Boxing Workout
To replenish energy and build and repair the muscles that were broken down during your workout, you should keep your metabolism strong by eating something that combines protein and carbs about half an hour to an hour after.
It’s important that you give your body fuel in the form of carbs and protein before your boxing class to get you through, but you also need to look after your body afterwards. To help your body recover and repair, aim for a high protein meal half an hour to an hour after the workout. This could be either solid or liquid form, but the point is that the sooner you ingest it, the better it will be for your body.
Here are some ideas on what to eat immediately after your workout to help speed recovery:
- A protein shake
- Poached eggs on whole-wheat toast
- Sauteed or steamed vegetables
- A bowl of quinoa with pecans and blackberries
- Stir-fried chicken and vegetables over brown rice
- Whole-wheat pasta with chicken, broccoli, and eggplant
- Multi-grain bread with raw peanut butter
- Salad with roasted chickpeas
- Whole-grain cereal or oatmeal along with milk and fruit
What Not To Eat Before Boxing
Choosing the right foods to eat before a workout may require a careful balance, but these are definite no-nos before boxing and working out:
- Drinking milk. It can cause sluggish feelings and reaction times.
- Filling up on junk foods. They don’t provide any real nutrients and can cause harm to your digestive system.
- Eating high-fat foods. Why put extra fat in before the burn?
- Bad, hard-to-digest fats: fast food and other industrial products
- Fast sugars: chocolate, sweets, soft drinks, cakes
- Acidic foods
- Spicy foods
- Alcohol, which promotes dehydration; Some high glycemic index fruits: pineapple, dates, chestnuts, raisins, melon, watermelon.
How Long Before A Boxing Workout Should I Eat?
Following a boxer’s diet plan means that meals should be timed out regularly--even on recovery days when you aren’t training. When planning a workout, try to adjust your mealtime or workout schedule to allow ample time between when you eat a full meal and when you hit the bag.
Boxers should plan a meal around 2 or 3 hours before boxing. This gives the body enough time to begin the digestion process. After around 2-3 hours, the energy in the carbohydrates is released, giving boxers increased stamina needed for longer workouts.
Before You Sweat It Out
Whether or not you eat before exercise, your body burns the same amount of fat regardless. However, if you regularly work out without eating first, you may cause muscle loss because your body goes into survival mode when you’re hungry, drawing protein from muscle. And muscle loss is something you want to avoid because it can slow down your metabolism, making it harder to lose weight.
Before exercising, you should balance your carbs with protein. Try meals that are somewhat high in carbs with moderate protein and are low in fat. Protein will help you build muscle and repair, but carbs will give you the energy you need to sustain yourself during a workout. So go for carbs that easily digest, and stay far away from high-fat foods, fried foods, or large amounts of food.
The trick is to time it right by eating within four hours of exercising and then having a small snack about an hour before working out.
Make sure to hydrate!
Before your workout and throughout your day, it’s important to drink plenty of water. Research has found that you are more likely to have a better workout and feel like that workout was easier when you drink between 400 to 600 ml of water before you get started.
The recommended amount of water you should drink per day is 13 cups for adult men and 9 cups for adult women. To help stay hydrated, keep a water bottle by your side as a reminder to take sips throughout your day. That way, when it’s time to step into the ring, your body’s ready to go!
Why Nutrition Is Important in Boxing
Boxing involves conditioning muscles and staying strong and reactive. A Fitboxer needs to make sure that they make it through the workout and recovers to train another day. Good nutrition means getting the right amounts of nutrients at the right times for the body’s activity, so eating these foods before boxing will help support the body before, during and immediately after the workout.
How Much Should I Eat?
This number is going to look different for everyone. But, as a general rule of thumb, the more active you are, the more carbohydrates and protein you should consume before and after working out.
Before making any changes to your diet, make sure to check in with your primary care doctor or nutritionist. They can help you set realistic and healthy goals that align with your specific needs.
Eat Six Meals a Day
Boxers typically are active all day, with the most intense energy expenditure occurring during training. So, instead of having three huge meals throughout the day, boxers opt to eat six reasonably sized meals. The reason behind this shift in the food schedule is the lengthy wait interval between meals in case boxers adhere to a three-meal schedule.
In the long run, waiting too long can cause an intense feeling of hunger and cause people to eat more than they should in between meals. This may increase the storage of fat within our bodies. A high level of fat isn’t a good idea for both regular and boxer athletes, and that’s why switching to eating six meals a day is a wise choice.
Two large meals when you wake up and then two hours before training are recommended. The rest of the time will be food items or meals between. In this way, you’re making sure you have enough energy to endure the whole training session, and you’re preventing yourself from being too hungry by eating meals every two to three hours between big meals.
There is no magic formula for a healthy pre or post-workout snack or meal, and it’s going to look different from person to person. The real key is stocking your fridge and pantry with a variety of nutrient-dense foods that you enjoy eating, that fill you up, and that supply your body with the energy it needs.
When you stock up on whole grains, fruits, veggies, fibre, healthy fats, and lean protein, you have healthy options to choose from when your stomach tells you that you’re hungry. These types of foods will keep you satisfied and feeling full for longer. Plus, they pack the power for that next workout in the ring!