It can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking that as long as you are exercising consistently you do not need to pay too much attention to what you eat, but believe it or not, food makes more of an impact on your results than exercise does. To get the results you are working hard for, whether it is weight loss or weight gain, you need to make sure you are eating the right foods and the right food portions. We are going to have a brief look at two areas of nutrition that people struggle with.
Too Little Food: A lot of people do not eat enough food, especially when they are trying to lose weight. It is a common thought that to lose weight we need to reduce how much energy we consume each day – which is true; however that does not mean we necessarily need to eat less, it means we need to choose less ‘energy dense’ food (energy dense food usually goes hand in hand with processed, packaged, fatty, or fried foods). When exercising regularly, our daily energy requirements increase, so not eating enough and not meeting our energy needs can mean that our bodies will seek energy out from within, using not only fat stores but muscle stores as well. While using up fat stores is a good thing, eating into muscle is not good and it damages all your hard work. If you eat too little and the body steals energy from the muscle, your muscle recovery will be hindered, making you extra tired, extra hungry and this will ultimately impinge on your next training session. Eating too little will also make your metabolism sluggish which will put the brakes on your results. It is important that you find out what your energy requirements are so you can monitor them and make sure you are eating for your needs.
Protein: Protein is crucial for getting your best results, whether it be losing weight or gaining weight. One of protein’s major functions is in aiding the repair of exercise-induced damage to muscle fibers. It does this by providing the nutrients needed to build larger, stronger muscles which can handle the stressful demands of exercise. For those of you thinking ‘I don’t want big bulky muscles’, do not fret; protein itself does not make bulky muscles, the type of training you do does that. Protein helps with muscle recovery as well as maintaining and strengthening the muscles. Building or maintaining muscle will encourage a faster metabolism; a quick metabolism requires more energy, and the body makes use of fat stores for the increased requirements. It is important to understand that if you do not consume enough protein your body cannot build the muscle you need. Protein is not stored up within the body, like fat is, and therefore needs to be replenished throughout the day. Eating some form of protein 4 to 5 times a day will help to keep your protein levels high enough to meet your requirements. In addition, protein at each meal will help with replenishing depleted energy stores within the body, as well as keeping blood sugar levels consistent throughout the day and provide bulk to a meal.
There is so much information out there about nutrition that it is no wonder people are getting confused and asking questions like – How much food is too much? Can I eat carbohydrates after 7pm? What is a good fat? With a new fad diet emerging every 30 days, there are so many mixed messages floating around that it can all seem very overwhelming, but there is a simple, yet scientific approach to food and exercise and it will get you amazing results.
To find out more about Nutrition Coaching with Rose and how to tackle a food and exercise program to get the best results possible, please do not hesitate to give us a call at Pro-Fit Health Club on 6230 7893