Fitness nutrition guidelines

Written by Emile Chauvin


Do you wish to get slimmer or pump muscles?
Did you sign up to a gym or do you run at nights?

This article will try to provide you with some important nutrition guidelines.

You should know that if you don’t take care of an appropriate nutrition before and after your training you will achieve partial results, and you probably will never complete the training program in full. This may result in you training hard without growing muscles and without losing weight.

On many occasions I encounter many people in Mauritius who invest a lot of efforts, time and money to improve the appearance of their body. They run daily, swim and even pump weights regularly but yet due to incorrect nutrition the results are far from satisfactory.

The decision to engage in sport activities is made by finding free time during the day, but in many cases one does not consider that it is also necessary to plan in advance how your diet should change accordingly. This causes people usually to improvise solutions which do not necessarily integrate with the requirements of the sports they are doing.

How to balance between the nutrition and the types of exercise:

Aerobics

Aerobic activity includes walking, running, riding the bicycle, skiing, jogging, swimming, etc. This training strengthens the heart and lungs functions and body muscles and uses a lot of calories. The amount of energy used is a function of the duration of the activity, degree of difficulty and personal traits of the person exercising.mauritius aerobics and nutrition

Before the activity: this physical activity is based on burning calories. Basic food groups that provide energy are carbohydrates and fats. Therefore, it is very important to eat a meal based on complex carbohydrates before an aerobic activity. Lack of energy from carbohydrates will cause you dizziness and even can cause you to faint.

Eating sugar just before the activity is prohibited. Sugar raises the level of insulin, prevents the release of fat from cells and commands the body to stall energy as fat cells.

Because the body's carbohydrates storage is limited, there is a need to eat 30-50 grams of carbohydrates (depending on body weight) about one hour before the activity. The more complex carbohydrates and lower glycemic value you eat, the more energy over time you will have.

High GI (High Glycemic) foods such as white bread, potatoes, jelly beans and corn flakes are converted to glucose quickly in your body, while low GI foods such as rolled oats, apples, pasta and yoghurt are converted to glucose slowly in your body.

If you are going to do a long work out (over 1.5 hours) then you can eat snacks or drinks with little sugars about half-hour after the beginning of the activity.

During the activity: if this is a continuing activity for half an hour to an hour and a half, the best thing to do is to drink water. If you feel hungry during the activity, or if the work out is long, eat some snack, that is based on simple sugars half an hour after the beginning of the work out. Simple sugars dissolve in the body quickly and therefore fill your appetite quickly, but avoid consuming sugar during the first 30 minutes of the exercise, blood sugar causes insulin to go up. Insulin prevents the release of fat acids to the blood. After half an hour from the beginning of the activity, fat acids are already released from the blood flow and drinking a drink with little sugar, allows the better burning of fat. So when feeling hungry during the activity, you should drink some beverages or sport drinks which contain minerals. These are better than water for activities with a long duration, since minerals prevent the making of urine and continue the duration of thirst.

Immediately after the activity: the body is still burning calories, so if you feel hungry after the activity eat simple carbohydrates like fruit, this will fill you up, and provide you with a carbohydrates environment to continue burning fat.

Strengthening muscles

This fitness training is about strengthening and sculpting the body using accessories such as weights, rubber bands, bars, etcstrengthening muscles nutrition. This training includes exercises to strengthen the skeleton muscles (voluntary muscles) and sculpt them. The muscle strengthens and sculpts, depending on the frequency, repeats, the difficulty of load and personal physical traits of the exerciser. The amount of calories burnt in this activity is much smaller than the amount burnt during aerobic exercise.

Muscle cells are formed by proteins (actin and myosin). When straining the muscle during the anaerobic practice, the muscle produces proteins, the more protein produced, the more the muscle expands and strengthens. Therefore, proteins are a major component of nutrition for the development of muscles. The more diverse origin they come from (meats, eggs, nuts, grains, legumes, and dairy products such as milk and cheese) the better contribution to the muscles.

Amount of protein recommended: please note that before beginning activities to strengthen muscles, you are required to eat between 0.8 to 1 gram of protein per kg of body weight, throughout the day.

When sculpting muscles you should eat an additional 10 grams of protein a day. This addition should be eaten close to the exercise- 1-2 hours before or up to 40 minutes after.

List of high protein foods from natural sources:

  • Egg – 6 grams of protein
  • Milk 1 glass - 6.3 grams of protein
  • Soya milk 200 ml - 6 grams of protein
  • Tofu 100 g - 8 grams of protein
  • Low fat yogurt (plain) 150g - 8 grams of protein
  • Low fat yogurt (fruit) 150g - 6 grams of protein
  • Fish fillets 100g - 21 grams of protein
  • Cheddar cheese 100g - 25 grams of protein
  • Roast beef 100g - 28 grams of protein
  • Roast chicken 100g - 25 grams of protein

Carbohydrates- when strengthening muscles: Since this exercise is not aerobic and the fat burning is relativity low, before this activity it is wise to eat simple carbohydrates which will balance you throughout the workout. After the workout eat complex carbohydrates which will help your body in building the new muscles.

Here's a list of complex carbohydrates foods:

Apples, Artichokes, Asparagus, Broccoli, Brown rice, Brussels sprouts, Buckwheat, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Cucumbers, Dried apricots, Eggplant, Garbanzo beans, Grapefruit, Kidney beans, Lentils, Lettuce, Low fat yogurt, Multi-grain bread, Muesli, Navy beans, Oat bran bread, Oatmeal, Onions, Oranges, Pears, Pinto beans, Plums, Potatoes, Prunes, Skim milk, Soy milk, Soybeans, Spinach, Split peas, Sprouts, Strawberries, Turnip, Greens, Water Cress, Whole Barley, Whole meal bread, Wild rice, Yams, Zucchini.

Here's a list of simple carbohydrates foods:

All baked goods made with white flour, Biscuit, Cake, Candy, Chocolate, Corn syrup, Fruit juice, Honey, Jam, Most packaged cereals, Pasta made with white flour, Soda pop, Table sugar, sweet yogurt.

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