How long to wait to exercise after eating?

If you’ve experienced the feelings that come with either eating too much before a workout or not eating enough, you’ll know that it can be both unpleasant and affect your performance … so, what is the right amount of time to wait after eating before you start exercising?

A runner after eating before workout

What and when you choose to eat before a workout will differ from person to person, so figuring out the right amount of time after eating to exercise for you, may take a little trial and error. A general rule of thumb about how long to wait to exercise after eating is the larger the meal, the more time you should wait before you start working out. 

What type of food should you eat before exercising?

How long to wait to exercise after eating also depends on what type of exercise you’re doing. 
If you’re planning on doing a short, vigorous workout such as HIIT, you should have some easily digestible carbs like yogurt, energy bars or granola and give it 60 minutes minimum after you’ve eaten before you start exercising. 

If you’ve got a high endurance exercise on the cards, like a marathon, you’ll need a good mix of protein and carbs. With a longer workout ahead, don’t be too shy on the portion size either - a little snack won’t give you the energy you need for your whole workout. Wait between 2-3 hours after eating before you get going. 

Eating before exercise is vital to getting the most out of your workout, so take the time to figure out what works best for your body and workout routine.