Most nutritional and hydration errors occur because the food and water is not readily available. If you are hungry and you don’t have healthy snacks and meals to consume, you will inevitably end up going through a drive through to satisfy your hunger – this is completely different than eating fast food because you don’t care about your health.
Speaking of being hungry, this is a sensation that you should NOT be experiencing on a daily basis. When it comes to nutrition for both your health and performance, there are two simple questions that you have to ask yourself:
1. Am I eating fresh fruit, vegetables and high quality fat every two (2) hours?
2. Am I getting hungry before the two (2) hour window of time has transpired?
Think about this for a minute, if you are eating nutrient dense fruits, vegetables and protein every two hours (this stabilizes your blood sugar levels along with satisfies your appetite) and you are still getting hungry – YOU NEED TO EAT MORE FOOD! This sounds completely contrary to the mainstream mindset; however, being hungry will undermine your efforts at each workout.
Think about your car, if you have a half a tank of gas and you want to drive 1000 miles, you can’t without filling up your gas tank. Your body is the same one but with one extra catch. To improve your workout quality, your brain and muscles need adequate sugar to complete the workout and raise its fitness to the next level. Without the new threshold of workload, the muscles will not be stimulated enough to create an adaptation – the result is a performance plateau.
When it comes to determining how much protein, carbohydrates and fats you have to consume refrain from pulling out a scale and reading labels extensively. Instead, focus on your hunger levels (there shouldn’t be any), evaluate your performance results (consistency and improvement) and your biofeedback (quality of sleep, resting heart rate, personality characteristics). If these evaluation elements are not consistently positive, you need to eat more food. If you begin to eat too much (this rarely happens), you will get a clear notice: your clothes will begin to wear tight.
Remember, stress comes in many forms: relationship, work, financial, workouts, hydration, hunger, etc. The value of your health and wellnexs is finding the correct balance of volume & intensity of training to maximize your training efforts and achieve your personal goals.
Ironically, it all starts with consuming adequate amounts of high quality food, remember it is all about Working Smart, Not Hard!
Yours in health and sport,