The purpose of a pre-training meal or snack is to make sure that you have enough energy for your training session.

You must consider the size of your meal. If you eat too much food before a training session you will feel sick and bloated. Try to allow 4-5 hours for a large meal to digest and 1-2 hours for a small meal to digest.

Food to have before a training session

Meals and snacks must be carbohydrate rich, from the bread, cereal, potato, pasta, grains and fruit food group. Eat low GI foods; energy will be released slowly, over a longer period of time.

Example foods

Before morning training:-

Toast (wholemeal) - peanut butter on toast, honey on toast

Porridge (add berries, bananas)

Cereals - oat based cereal, natural muesli, all bran (try to avoid sugar rich cereal like Coco-pops, Frosties etc. as energy is released very quickly).


Food to have before evening training

Pasta (wholewheat)

Rice (wholegrain)

Jacket potato and salad


As the training session gets closer, meals should get smaller and more like snacks.

Low fat cereal bars, fruit, fruit juice, smoothies


Make sure you drink plenty of fluid to remain hydrated during your training session.

Water, squash, fruit juice, smoothie, (if using sports drinks dilute 50% water / 50% sport drink)

You should aim to consume at least 1 litre of low sugar content fluids at least 1 hour before training.

During training

The purpose of a snack or drink during training is to maintain energy and blood sugar levels and to keep hydrated

Snacks during training should be easy to digest to avoid being sick.

Food to have during a training session

Snacks should be carbohydrate rich, and low in fat. Eat high GI foods as energy will be released quickly to maintain energy stores

Example foods

Low fat cereal bars

Fruit (banana, orange, raisins)

Dried fruit

Healthy flapjacks (lots of oats, seeds and nuts)

Rice cakes


Make sure you drink plenty of fluids to avoid becoming de-hydrated. Aim to consume ¼ litre of fluid every 20 minutes during training as you are replacing the fluids you sweat out during training.



Fruit Juice


Diluted sports drinks

A sport drink is better if diluted to avoid feeling drained due to the high sugar content.

(Note: Research into sports drinks and their effects are inconclusive and inconsistent. CLP in no way recommend the use of energy drinks (especially caffeine based) and use of such is personal choice)

Post Training

The purpose of a recovery snack and drink is to replace energy that has been used and replace the fluids lost through sweat

Think about the timing of your recovery snack. The sooner you eat after training, the better your recovery will be. You want to be eating within 30 minutes of a training session. Keep your food handy in your bags

Food to have after a training session

Meals and snacks must be carbohydrate rich with some protein. The protein helps you recover quicker. Protein is used to build and repair muscles. Eat high GI foods; energy will be released quickly to top up stores.

Example foods

Chicken salad sandwich

Peanut butter sandwich

Egg Sandwich




Dried fruit, nuts and seeds

Low fat cereal bar


Make sure you drink plenty of fluids to avoid becoming dehydrated. It is important that you are replacing the fluids lost by sweating in training



Fruit Juice 



Diluted sports drinks