No matter whether you are learning a new sport, or are a fitness enthusiast, it is very important that you pay attention to nutrition and diet. Sports nutrition is an essential element for excellent performance, good health and overall fitness, and every athlete should have the basics down. This post is going to give you all the starters at a glance.
1. Water is the most essential and important nutrient for the human body, and if you are an active person, you need to increase the intake of fluids by a decent percentage. A way to get a general idea of how much water you should drink, half your body weight in ounces. So if you weigh 180 lbs, half of that is 90, or 90 oz of water. While water is enough for most activities up to about 90 minutes, it may be beneficial to have sports drinks for strenuous exercise. Electrolytes present in these beverages can help you recover faster after a workout. According to the book “Nutrient Timing” by John Ivy, PhD at the University of Texas at Austin, he suggests an “Anabolic Drink” within 45 minutes after your workout. This would consist of 1 part protein to 3 parts carbohydrates. Most people will suffice with 15 grams of protein and 45 grams of carbohydrates. An example would be one scoop of protein powder with 8oz of Almond milk and 2 tbsp of honey. This immediate post workout meal will help you recover faster and support muscle growth.
2. Even if you are trying to lose weight, carbohydrates are necessary (at certain times of day!) and work as the primary source of energy for the body. However, the source of carbohydrates is also critical, and instead of getting your calories from sugars and starches, you need better sources like veggies, fruits, and cereals like oats. Keep in mind that you should check each meal, which should have at least one portion of carbohydrates.
3. Do note that protein is more than essential for sports nutrition, and therefore, you need to have a decent amount of protein throughout the day. Exercise intensity plays a large role in the kind of muscles you get, apart from the genetic factors. In addition to the “Anabolic Drink” mentioned above, Dr. Ivy suggests you give great consideration to a “Growth Drink” 2-4 hours AND 16 hours after that intense workout consisting of 5 parts protein and 1 part carbohydrates. An example would be a heaping scoop of protein powder with about 6 oz of Almond milk.
4. Your body also needs key vitamins, minerals and other nutrients to properly function and get the results you are looking for. We recommend establishing a baseline with a Micronutrient blood test by Spectracell. This test doesn’t look at key nutrients in the bloodstream, but microscopically measures the levels found in your white blood cells. This is much more specific and tells you what your body is absorbing and how much. You can then tailor a specific diet and nutrient plan around that. We also recommend re-evaluating every 6-9 months so you can monitor and adjust, if needed.
5. Finally, do not underestimate the power of pharmaceutical grade supplements (nutriceuticals) as they perfectly compliment a good diet and will fulfill your needs based on the your Spectracell Micronutrient results. Many times, experts may use diverse kinds of homoeopathic formulae to reduce pain, inflammation and bruises, in case there is no improvement in the condition of the patient. Before you start a supplement regimen, make sure that you talk to your doctor in detail about this.
Focusing on a balanced diet and workout program will help you perform in life better!
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