Pre and Post Workout Smoothies

The need to exercise comes along with the need to consume fall themed smoothies (at least in my opinion)! It is a well known fact that it is not a good idea to work out on an empty stomach. There are also several nutrients lost during a workout that should be replenished afterward. When you are planning a workout (depending on how recently you have consumed a meal) you should consider a pre- and/or post-workout snack. I’m not saying a smoothie is the only way to go…but it is definitely an easy and delicious option!

I was recently tasked with creating a few tasty and nutritious pre- and post-workout smoothie recipes. While refreshing my knowledge about the appropriate nutritional content for such a thing, I noted a few very important nutrients to keep in mind when choosing a pre- and/or post-workout snack of any kind. 1) The snack should be low in fat and include carbohydrates and some protein (specific amounts depend on the person). Carbohydrates fuel your muscles and protein helps to build muscle and repair damage caused during use. 2) You should try and replace electrolytes (sodium and potassium) after your workout. After gathering this information I came up with two tasty recipes!

Apple Cinnamon Pre-Workout Smoothie



  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk

  • ½ cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt

  • 1 small apple

  • ¼ cup Raisins (or dates)

  • Cinnamon, to taste

  • 1 tsp maple syrup


Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix until desired consistency is reached.

Makes: 1 Smoothie

Serving size: 1 smoothie

Nutrition Facts:

  • Calories: 270

  • Fat: 2 g

  • Protein: 13 g

  • Carbs: 53 g

  • Fiber: 5 g

  • Sodium: 148 mg

  • Potassium: 208 mg

Pumpkin Spice Post-Workout Smoothie



  • Chobani vanilla Greek yogurt (100 calorie container)

  • ½ cup solid packed pumpkin

  • ½ cup skim milk

  • 1 small banana

  • Pumpkin pie spice, to taste

  • Cinnamon, to taste

  • Nutmeg, to taste

  • Dash of sea salt, if needed (see note below)**


Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix until desired consistency is reached.

Makes: 1 Smoothie

Serving Size: 1 Smoothie

Nutrition Facts:

  • Calories: 283

  • Fat: 1 g

  • Protein: 19 g

  • Carbs: 52 g

  • Fiber: 11 g

  • Sodium: 140 mg

  • Potassium: 565 mg

**Keep in mind that the typical American diet includes enough sodium already. Depending on what you have had the rest of the day (and what you plan to have later) it may or may not be necessary to add salt to a smoothie. I recommend keeping track of what you have eaten using a diet tracker (smart phone app or online) to see how much sodium you are regularly consuming. If you determine you do not meet the suggested intake of sodium, adding just a dash of sea salt to the Pumpkin Spice Post-Workout Smoothie would increase the sodium content by about 200 mg

There are, of course, numerous reputable websites and journal articles related to nutrition and exercise; but I often used the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website ( while I was in college. There is a TON of helpful content if you have questions. The links to the content I used while gathering information are listed below:

You may also want to search the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website for the following Nutrition Fact Sheets:

  • Nutrition Fact Sheet: Exercise Hydration

  • Nutrition Fact Sheet: Eating Before Exercise

  • Nutrition Fact Sheet: Eating for Recovery

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