Between class, work, and on-campus organizations, squeezing in a workout can be difficult. And finding a good pre-workout snack can be the determinant of whether or not you're able to power through your workout. Luckily, theres a couple foods that give you the ability to power through your hard workouts and your hard days. Try one these creative pre-workout snacks to fuel your next workout!

Dried Fruit

Fruits are easily digestible carbohydrates that will give you a quick carb-filled fuel to your workout. They're sweet like candy but are filled with natural sugars that not only make them taste good, but also give you the quick little boost you need. Unlike normal fruit, dried fruit won't go bad if you keep some stashed in your backpack or gym bag throughout the day. Check out some dried foods like blueberries, mangos, bananas, or mandarins. You can buy it at many grocery stores but can also make your own!

Dark Chocolate

Dessert and chocolate lovers everywhere will rejoice in knowing that dark chocolate is actually a fantastic, and sweet way, to fuel your workout. The natural antioxidants that are found in dark chocolate actually help to prevent muscle soreness after a workout. Whether you grab a handful of chocolate chips on your way out the door or mix a couple into your favorite protein shake, dark chocolate is a great way to fuel your workout!

chocolate, coffee
Jennifer Cao


Collagen is the new hype in fitness and health trends, and can be used as a great way to fuel your workout. Collagen is the most prominent protein found in the body, and it gives us the ability to stretch and move. Eating foods with collagen before a workout may help to promote healthy joints, and ease joint pain, during and after workouts. Collagen can be found in pure powder form that can be added to any hot or cold drink, or can be found added into foods like protein bars. 

Nut Butters

Think beyond just the go-to peanut butter. Other amazing nut butters that can fuel your workout include almond butter, cashew butter, and macadamia nut butter. Nut butters are packed with healthy fats, fiber and lots of vitamins and minerals. They taste great on a slice of whole wheat toast, with some apple slices, or even just spooned out of the jar. For convenience, many also come in perfectly portioned packs, to make them transportable around campus. 

Hummus and Vegetables

Hummus has always been a favorite of savory snack lovers, but can also be a fantastic way to fuel your workout. Many stores sell hummus with various different non-traditional flavors, like roasted garlic or pesto. And dipping your favorite veggies in it has great health benefits to your workout. Hummus is packed with protein and carbohydrates healthy to provide sustained energy throughout your workout.

vegetable, cream, hummus, mashed potatoes, milk, dairy product
Katherine Richter

DIY Protein Bars

Making your own protein bars allows you to know exactly what's inside of it. It makes them one of the most natural ways to fuel your workout, and lets you put anything you may need in them. Many DIY protein bars often have ingredients like almond butter, chia and flax seeds, coconut flakes, and even chocolate chips. Try this recipe to make your own before your next workout!

sweet, candy, chocolate, cake, granola, pastry, cookie, muesli
Alex Tom


Drinking a cup of coffee about an hour before a workout is a perfect way to get your caffein kick to fuel your workout. It's a more natural alternative to the popular pre-workout drinks but still provides the benefits you need to power through your workout. Coffee has natural fat-burning properties and can help increase your performance and improve your focus. Just try to stay clear from heavy creamers and added sugars.

coffee, espresso, cereal, cappuccino, mocha, relish, decaffeinated coffee