Somewhere in life, we have figured out that the only thing constant is change. One day you figure out a formula that finally works perfectly (i.e. strict meat-eating diets), and the inches are just sliding off. Then the next minute it no longer works and you’ve found yourself with cholesterol levels that are off the chart. Sure, green tea is fabulous and you’ve lost fifteen pounds while drinking it non-stop for a week, but these days it just doesn’t do the trick.
So what is it? What is the all-encompassing formula? What is the universal law that we can apply to our daily lives no matter what time of the year it is and always get the same result? That universal law is a body in motion tends to stay in motion, but a body can’t be in motion without proper nutrition. Regular exercise and diet go hand-in-hand. An improper diet combined with exercise is not always the best approach.
Fitness nutrition is an entirely different aspect of dieting than a regular diet or a restrictive diet. Fitness nutrition is based on what a body is burning while working, what it needs to continue working, and what it needs to recover and heal.
What and When to Eat If You are Exercising
Fitness nutrition involves a diet designed for individuals who plan to exercise for more than an hour on a daily basis. Muscle fatigue is the number one cause of general tiredness during exercise. Regular fatigue is caused by low levels of stored sugar in the liver, while muscle fatigue is caused by low levels of sugar in the muscles. When muscles run out of their supply, they tend to hurt and feel tired so to increase your endurance and combat fatigue, the best approach is to eat small amounts frequently.
The best source of sugar for muscles is glucose, which we get from carbohydrates (sugary and starchy foods). If you are working out for more than an hour, you should eat fresh or dried fruit, bread, cereals, beans, yogurt, or anything else. Sports drinks and energy bars are not adequate sugar supplies to support long periods of strenuous exercise and they can be bad for your teeth. Avoid high-fat carbohydrates, such as cakes and biscuits.
The most important key to fitness nutrition is keep hydrated at all times! Do not wait until you feel thirsty to drink water – keep a bottle with you all the time. You should drink one cup before your workout, one cup during your workout, and three cups after your workout. Keeping fully hydrated is not only imperative to fitness nutrition, it is imperative to life.
It seems like every time we turn on the television or talk to a neighbor, there is a new diet on the market. You can rest assured that the one thing that has not changed is the exercise factor. Simply put, the more you move, the more you burn. In order to burn efficiently, you must know proper fitness nutrition. Always check with your physician before starting any new dietary changes, and remember slow and steady wins the race!