5 mins read

Firdos Shaikh

M.Sc. Biochemistry


Sure, working out is essential, but so is your diet. What you eat prior to and post your exercise sessions majorly defines your progress. As experts say, “A good physique is 20% exercise and 80% diet.” Speaking of diet, what must your meals comprise of, especially for a vegetarian? True that there is no dearth of vegan food items, but what should you eat? Let’s find out.

Pre-workout meals:

  • Banana and almond butter:

This combination works just fine with dry fruit toppings. Banana is an active source of potassium to keep you hydrated for long. It contains little to no fat and cholesterol. Wheat bread layered with almond butter is an excellent combination for a good digestive system and a healthy heart.

You can layer a slice of brown bread or toast with almond butter, place a few pieces of banana and top it off with dry fruits. If you need a quick pre-workout snack, a banana smoothie works
wonders too.

Banana & Almond Butter Toast

  • Cottage cheese sandwich:

cottage cheese

Cottage cheese, commonly known as paneer, is a great source of milk protein essential for both your pre and post workout meals. Cottage cheese is quite versatile when it comes to preparing dishes of it.

Make a batter of boiled mashed potatoes, cottage cheese, peas, and any other veggies according to your choice. Layer it on a slice of bread, grill it, and voila! You are good to go!. You can even make a salad or have cottage cheese as a side with a fruit smoothie.

  • Oats meal:

oats meal

The complex carbs from oatmeal complemented with honey and dry fruits is the best pre-workout snack. You can cook it up in milk and have it on-the-go. This snack will keep you satiated for long until you’re through with your workout.

Better still, soak 1/3 cup of oats overnight in half a cup of almond milk or plain milk. You can have it the next morning with honey and fruits such as blueberries and bananas.

Post workout meals:

  • Egg and vegetable sandwich:

Albumin from eggs is one of most required proteins in your body. It is also the best alternative to mayonnaise. A sandwich stuffed with veggies like cauliflower, tomatoes, potatoes, avocados, layered with egg and low-fat cheese is the best post-workout snack. Make an omelette for this stuffing or use scrambled eggs, both taste wonderful and are equally healthy.

You can even make a vegetable sandwich and have freshly boiled eggs as a side. Have this snack immediately after you finish your run or cardio exercises. This dish is full of good and healthy fat, protein, and carbohydrates to replenish your muscles with the much-required nutrition right after your workout.

Egg Vegetable Sandwich

  • Yoghurt salad with fruits:

Yoghurt Salad and Fruits

Casein, an essential protein from yoghurt, creates an insulin spike in your system that absorbs all glucose. This leads to a drastic rise in energy sources right after your workout. You can customise this salad to the likes of your taste by adding fruits like bananas, mangoes, strawberries, grapes, and cherries. Make sure you add a little water to mix it all well as an even dish.


  • Banana smoothie:

For this, you’ll need 2 peeled bananas, yoghurt or milk, and a little peanut butter. Mix all these ingredients up in a blender until the texture is smooth and fine. This protein shake is enough by itself to give your muscles the much-needed nutrition immediately after you have put it through an intense session of workout.

If you are on organic protein powder supplement, this is the perfect smoothie to add it to. You can even customize this protein shake by adding fruits like mango and apple according to your taste or the availability of the fruit. It will only increase it in nourishment. Don’t forget to add ½ tsp cinnamon and a few powdered dry fruits like almonds and walnuts to top up your smoothie.

Workout Meals for Vegetarians

Tips for having meals before and after working out:

  • For your pre-workout meals, ensure that it is rich in complex carbs, proteins, and fibre to keep you active and satiated through the session.
  • Post-workout meals need to be full of proteins and simple carbs to help build lean muscle mass and up your blood glucose content as soon as possible.
  • Avoid having too much oil, ghee, junk, and sugar immediately before and after your workout
  • The heavier your pre-workout meal is, the earlier you must have it. Avoid working out for at least 2-3 hours post a heavy meal.
  • Keep topping up the amount of water in your body. Anything more or less than 2-3 litres is not recommended!
  • Don’t shy away from consuming fats and oils, but in a controlled and healthy manner.
  • Take food supplements, if you must. But do so only if they prove to be natural and organic. Synthetic food supplements will only wear your body out in the long run.
Say No to pharmacies and say Yes to Life!
Fitness studio
Say No to pharmacies and say Yes to Life!
Strive for progress, not perfection.
Fitness studio
Strive for progress, not perfection.
Every workout counts. You'll be better off being sore than being sorry!
Fitness studio
Every workout counts. You'll be better off being sore than being sorry!
Your body can stand almost anything. It’s your mind that you have to convince.
Fitness studio
Your body can stand almost anything. It’s your mind that you have to convince.