How to Snack Like a Personal Trainer
Snack smarter and work out harder.
Keep in mind: Price and stock could change after publish date, and we may make money from these links.
If there’s anyone who understands the importance of clean, quick and energy-boosting eats, it’s a trainer. Between clients, group classes and squeezing in their own workouts, spandex-sporting fitness professionals are constantly fueling on-the-run. (And we’re not just talking about chugging chalky protein powder from a shaker bottle!)
With nearly 25 percent of our daily calories coming from snacks, between-meal noshing has a huge impact on our strength, stamina and overall success — in the gym and real world. That’s why we asked five trainers about their A-game grazes.
Rebecca Kennedy (Peloton Master Tread Instructor, NASM, RRCA)
Kennedy celebrates her background in dance (she’s a former NFL cheerleader!), gymnastics and track daily on the new Peloton Tread, empowering runners to hit new strides through positivity and a rocking playlist. Inspiring in the global spotlight requires quite a bit of energy, as you could imagine, but this foodie has working up an appetite down to a science.
Her first line of snacking defense: Roasted veggies and homemade protein pancakes, both of which she always has prepped in the fridge. “I make my pancakes small and portion them out into stasher bags to take with me and eat with my hands,” Kennedy says. Her go-to recipe: one egg, a mashed banana and two scoops protein powder. Top with nut butter, maple syrup or blueberry compote for extra pizzazz!
So what’s in her gym bag? “This sounds weird but right now, Tunnino jarred wild caught tuna in olive oil, ProMix BCAA single servings, Macoun apple, RX Nut Butter and always a GoMacro bar,” shares Kennedy.
Commute-tough snacks are clutch for always on-the-go celeb trainer Langowski. Cue pre-packaged nuts, low-sugar protein bars (No-Cow Bars are his favorite) and fruit, like apples and bananas, to the rescue. “Plan your eating the night before,” advises Langowski. “Look at your schedule and know when and what you will be eating so you know what to pack.”
With two snack times (10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.) scheduled into his regular programming, Langowski is able to stay fueled for clients while powering up for his own core-crushing routines. (Seriously, check out his Insta for major 6-pack #fitspo.) “I try to be good 99 percent of the time,” he says, admitting an adoration for pizza, burgers and ice cream.
Meal prep doesn’t have to be a time-suck—nor a chore—as mom, trainer and group fitness instructor, Bomgren illustrates with ease on her blog, Nourish Move Love. “It can be as simple as washing and cutting fruits/veggies to baking eggs in a muffin tin so you don’t even have to peel hard boiled eggs,” Bomgren says.
Her homemade, purse-portable staples include energy bites, blueberry egg muffins, veggie egg muffins, spinach banana pancakes and overnight oats. Too rushed to cook? Trail mix has a permanent home next to her wallet and lip balm for mid-afternoon hankerings. “Nuts for me, raisins for my son!” Brownie points for mixes with dark chocolate chunks.
With a motto, “Be true to you!” Brown is all about living an abundant life—including delicious baked goods her father coined “Powercakes.” “I don’t use the word ‘cheat’ often only because I’ve had a history of seeing food as different labels such as ‘good’ or ‘bad,’” Brown shares. “There is always room for moderation! Balance is so key.”
Packing a protein punch in every refuel ensures this balance, she says. No need to bulk up on egg whites and dry chicken breast, though! Brown loves making delish overnight oats and smoothies with NOW FOODS Creamy Vanilla Egg White Protein the night before busy days for breezy eats. Her other must-haves: RX Bars Maple Sea Salt and veggies with hummus.
Me, Myself and I: Lauren Seib (NASM CPT, Group Fitness Teacher)
In my wedding vows to my husband, I thanked him for loving me even when I was hangry. (I mean, goodness knows what has/will come out of my mouth when I have a growling belly…) With that said, snacks are my daily savior from the between-meal crankies. Vega and Garden of Life protein powder-packed smoothies are MVPs in my daily diet, alongside Thunderbird Bars which I always have stowed away in my tote. (Pop the Hazelnut Coffee Maca in your freezer for a brownie-like afternoon pick-me-up! Seriously, do it.)
As a fan of anything salty/crunchy, my number one recommendation to clients is to have brown rice cakes at home (or in your office desk), as they are an easy vehicle for sin-free sweet and/or savory snacks. A favorite of mine as of late: Trader Joe’s Wild Nova Smoked Sockeye Salmon-topped rice cake, garnished with a few capers. A macro maven that crushes cravings in a flash.
Lauren Seib is a pug mom, personal trainer, online coach and group fitness instructor based in Stamford, Conn. Her credentials include NASM CPT, Spinning®, RYT 200 and Barre by exhale.