No matter if you're an experienced fitness junkie or you're just starting to flirt with the idea of amping up your fitness, you need to pay attention to what you eat and drink before and after a workout.
My personal favorite pre-workout drinks? Smoothies!
And here are some easy recipes for you.
How to Make the Best Pre-Workout Smoothies
The best smoothies for pre-workout provide a mix of healthy carbs and protein. They’re a perfect snack or meal both before and after you work out.
Smoothies are easy to carry and drink anywhere, you can customize them endlessly, and they’ll give you an energy boost without making you feel stuffed.
If you want to get the most out of a smoothie, you should drink it at least 30 minutes before a workout and have a healthy snack right after.
You can also drink half of your smoothie before the training and finish it post-workout.
And even if smoothies help you hydrate, you shouldn't forget to drink plenty of water, too.
Making a delicious smoothie is incredibly simple, but you need to pay attention to a couple of things if you want to reach the optimal fitness performance and recovery:
- Pack that smoothie with protein
You've got so many great options such as nuts and nut butter, yogurt, milk, silken tofu, and plant milk. Protein will help you build muscle mass, which is excellent no matter if you're a bodybuilder or just want to tone your body.
- Go for energy-boosting add-ins.
Add oats, fruit, and yogurt. Don’t shy away from energizing carbs — they’re your friend when you're working out.
- Don't go overboard.
Sure, you're working out, and smoothies can be healthy but don't make a calorie-dense, sugar-packed smoothie that'll undo all your hard work.
An occasional treat is fine, but don't get into the habit of adding in ice cream or chocolate syrup, and make sure you're consuming a healthy serving. Just remember that:
Related article: What to Do When Your Pre-Workout Stops Working?
"A healthy outside starts from the inside." - Robert Urich, American film, tv, and stage actor.
10 Tastiest Pre-Workout Smoothies
Here are ten of my favorite, delicious, and easy-to-make smoothie recipes:
1. Creamy Banana Strawberry Split Smoothie
Packed with almond milk, protein powder, flax, chia seeds, banana, and strawberry, this smoothie will put you in a good mood.
Vanilla, honey, and cinnamon give it a flavor boost, although if you put more cinnamon, its taste can be a bit overpowering.
Four servings of this deliciousness require:
- One cup almond milk
- One chopped banana, frozen
- ¾ cup strawberries
- Three ice cubes
- One scoop vanilla protein powder
- One teaspoon vanilla extract
- One teaspoon honey
- One teaspoon ground flax seed
- One teaspoon ground chia seeds
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Throw everything into your blender and blend until smooth.
One serving should provide you with:
- 111 calories
- 10.4g protein
- 14.4g carbohydrates
- 1.6g fat
- 3.1mg cholesterol
- 94.7mg sodium
2. Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
The peanut butter and banana combo is a classic. You can make one of the most popular smoothies with a handful of ingredients:
- Two bananas, broken into chunks
- Two cups milk
- ½ cup peanut butter
- Two tablespoons honey, or to taste
- Two cups ice cubes
Chug everything into the blender and blend for about 30 seconds or until smooth.
The pre-workout smoothie provides four servings, and each serving should provide you with:
- 335 calories
- 12.8g protein
- 34.1g carbohydrates
- 18.8g fat
- 9.8mg cholesterol
- 202.8mg sodium
3. Strawberry Oatmeal Breakfast Smoothie
Not only is this vegan smoothie fast to make, which makes it perfect for your busy mornings, but it’s also very filling.
You could even drink it instead of breakfast, but it’s good for any time of the day.
Two servings require:
- One cup soy milk
- ½ cup rolled oats
- One banana, broken into chunks
- 14 frozen strawberries
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ teaspoon white sugar
Just blend until smooth and enjoy the flavor.
One serving of this tasty smoothie should provide you with:
- 236 calories
- 7.6g protein
- 44.9g carbohydrates
- 3.7g fat
- 65.4mg sodium
4. Matcha Coconut Smoothie
Now, this isn’t your average green smoothie. It may be packed with antioxidants from kale and matcha, but it gets its sweetness from mango and coconut. It’s an incredible energy booster jam-packed with protein from white beans.
To make one smoothie, you’ll need:
- One banana
- One cup frozen mango chunks
- Two leaves kale, torn into several pieces
- Three tablespoons white beans, drained
- Two tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
- ½ teaspoon matcha green tea powder
- One cup water
You'll need to blend it for a bit longer than the average smoothies, but the incredible taste is worth the additional 1–2 minute wait.
One serving provides:
- 367 calories
- 8g protein
- 72.4g carbohydrates
- 8.8g fat
- 35.9mg sodium
5. Apple Vanilla Smoothie
Apples aren’t a very common ingredient in smoothie recipes, but they can add lots of flavor to your drink.
For one smoothie, you’ll need:
- Two small chilled tart apples, sliced
- ⅓ cup skim milk
- ¼ cup orange juice
- ¼ banana, frozen
- Two tablespoons vanilla whey protein powder
- One tablespoon flax seeds
- One ice cube
This one is more calorie-dense, and it'll provide you with:
- 422 calories
- 41.7g protein
- 53.5g carbohydrates
- 6.9g fat
- 13.4mg cholesterol
- 242.4mg sodium
6. Razzy Blue Smoothie
This naturally sweet smoothie packs lots of flair and nutrients. Since it has a good protein and carb balance, it makes a great workout smoothie.
For three razzy blue smoothies, you’ll need:
- One banana
- 16 whole almonds
- ¼ cup rolled oats
- One tablespoon flaxseed meal
- One cup frozen blueberries
- One cup raspberry yogurt
- ¼ cup Concord grape juice
- One cup 1% buttermilk
One serving will provide you with:
- 262 calories
- 8.8g protein
- 44.5g carbohydrates
- 6.5g fat
- 8.3mg cholesterol
- 141.8mg sodium
7. Green Monster Smoothie
This smoothie will keep you full for hours, so you may also want to try it as a post-workout smoothie.
What's best is that you can't even taste the spinach because the banana and the nut butter cover its flavor, but you'll get all the benefits from it.
One green smoothie requires:
- One cup fat-free milk
- ½ cup fat-free plain yogurt
- One banana, frozen and chunked
- One tablespoon natural peanut butter
- Two cups fresh spinach
- One cup ice cubes (optional)
The green monster will provide you with:
- 382 calories
- 23.6g protein
- 55.7g carbohydrates
- 9.4g fat
- 7.4mg cholesterol
- 328mg sodium
8. Tropical Teaser Smoothie
If you miss the sun, beach, and sea, this smoothie will transport you right into your dreams.
For two servings of this summery drink, you’ll need:
- 2 cups vanilla soy milk
- 1 cup fresh pineapple chunks
- ⅔ cup frozen cantaloupe chunks
- ½ cup soft tofu
- Two tablespoons lime juice
- 1 ½ teaspoons coconut extract
You can also substitute cantaloupe with frozen banana chunks.
One serving of this summer in a glass will provide you with:
- 230 calories
- 12.5g protein
- 29.9g carbohydrates
- 6.9g fat
- 121.7mg sodium
9. Banana Walnut Bliss
The banana walnut combo will provide you with antioxidants and get you energized.
For one serving of this pre-workout smoothie, you’ll need:
- One cup skim milk
- 0.50 large banana
- 0.50 tablespoon honey
- 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
- a handful of walnut pieces (or seven halves)
This potassium-rich drink will provide you with:
- 227 calories
- 10g protein
- 5g fat, 37g carbohydrates
- 5mg cholesterol
- 130mg sodium
10. C-Blast Smoothie
There's a reason I call this one C-blast. This pre-workout smoothie is jam-packed with vitamin C.
You may want to try it if your iron levels are low since vitamin C helps the absorption of iron . It’ll also provide you with lots of energy.
One pre-workout smoothie requires:
- 0.50 large pink grapefruit peeled, seeded, and cut into chunks
- 1/4 cup pineapple crushed, canned, or fresh
- 1/4 cup strawberries fresh or frozen (if using fresh, add 1/4 cup [60 mL] ice for extra froth)
- 1/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
One serving of the C-blast will provide you with:
- 159 calories
- 7g protein
- 0g fat
- 35g carbohydrates
- 0mg cholester
Are Smoothies Good Before a Workout?
Do You Drink a Smoothie Before or After a Workout?
You can drink smoothies both pre- and post-workout. It all depends on your exercise goals and current health and fitness condition.
If you're not sure which one's the best for you, consult a physician or your trainer.
The Pre-Workout Smoothie Winner
The Ray Blue and C-blast are by far my favorites.
They fill me up but don't give me that feeling of being overstuffed, and they energize me nicely.
Do you have a favorite natural pre-workout smoothie? Share your tips and recipes in the comments; I'd love to get some new ideas!