With the arrival of summer, many will increase physical activity for both fun and fitness. Regular exercise is an important component of fitness & health, but how many know that what we ate last night and this morning can impact today's workout?
Fluids: help maintain temperature, deliver energy and nutrients, Carbohydrate: most readily available fuel for working muscles, Protein: essential for muscle mass, strength, recovery, Vitamins & minerals: essential for converting food to energy.
Also, timing the consumption of food and drink throughout exercise can significantly improve hydration, energy, & recovery.
BEFORE: two to four hours before exercise, hydrate and eat healthful carbohydrate-rich foods. Consider a natural caffeine boost 30 minutes prior.
DURING: Continue hydrating with small amounts of cool fluids. For events longer than one hour, consider rapidly digested carbohydrate-rich foods.
AFTER: Try to consume a balance of fluids, carbohydrate, and protein immediately after exercise to maximize hydration, muscle-energy refueling, muscle repair, & muscle rebuilding.
I feel like I need a cheat-sheet to remember all of these tips when I exercise :). As I share with my organizing clients, baby steps create success. . . . I started my nutrition strategy with fluids (water, electrolyte replacement) per my chiropractor.
A couple years later, I discovered natural whole food supplements to get those essential vitamins and minerals. It took me many years to understand healthful carbohydrates, and my plasma donations have increased my learning curve on protein. When it comes to my workout, the fluids and carbohydrates I mentioned above cover me before. I still need to create the habit of hydrating during, and I have a start on after with fluids – working on the carbohydrates and protein.
Like I shared with a friend last night, my health journey has come a long way AND it took four years to get here. I look forward to how much more I will improve in the years to come, and I hope my slow & steady experience encourages you or someone you know :).
Would you like natural options for your sports-nutrition strategy? For your FREE consultation (in person, over the phone, via email), speaking and training needs, tips, or gift certificates, please contact Jessica Crouch: www.ChooseToImprove.com, Jessica@OrganizeAnywhere.com, 319-504-6689. Remember, reaching a goal with help is better than not reaching it at all: working with busy women who are passionate about making a change in their health because they are “sick and tired” of being sick and tired - mentoring them using natural health & wellness so they can save money and sick days!