Nurtrition tips for PT test

  • Published
  • By 1st Lt. Kimberly Fischer
  • 433rd Medical Squadron
The night before taking the physical fitness test, you should eat a healthy, balanced dinner and avoid drinking alcohol. A healthy balanced meal includes a lean source of protein (fish, chicken, or turkey), vegetables, and a source of complex carbohydrates (pasta, bagel, whole grain breads, rice, etc.).

On the morning of the test, in order to reach your maximum performance level, you must avoid exercising on an empty stomach. You are more likely to perform poorly when you do not get enough calories, carbohydrates (most importance source of energy for the body), fluids, Iron, vitamins, and other minerals and protein.

You need to drink water and other non-sugary fluids to keep the body hydrated and at the right temperature. Drink about 16 ounces (two cups) of water two hours before the test. You should continue to sip water and fluids during and after exercise. Your consumption should be at least one-half to one cup of fluid every 15 to 20 minutes during the first hour.
After exercising, you need to eat carbohydrates to build the glycogen storage back up in your muscles. Within 30 minutes, eat a granola bar or small bagel with jelly. If you exercise for more than 90 minutes, eat or drink more carbohydrates with protein within two hours of completing your workout (sports bar, trail mix with nuts, or yogurt and granola).

In addition to eating the right foods and drinking the correct amount of fluids to prepare for the test, your might focus on changing your body weight during your test preparation training. It is important to set realistic body weight goals. When you are seeking to change your body weight to improve performance, it must be done safely or it may do more harm than good. By keeping your body weight too low, losing weight too quickly, or preventing weight gain in an unnatural way, it can have negative health effects.

If you any questions or concerns, contact a local registered dietician on base or through your private care provider.

(1st. Lt. Fischer MPH, RD, LD is a registered dietitian at the Micheal E. DeBakey VA Medical Center in Houston, Texas and is certified in Adult Weight Management.)