The final part of the kickstart blog is focussing on NUTRITION and the role it has to play. This can be the most complex and confusing thing for many people, with so much said about it and so many different theories and information flying around!
So for now let’s try and keep this simple, there are your three bases – Carbohydrates, Protein and Fat.
Carbohydrates are our energy source, and in simplest form are converted into glucose (blood sugar). These can then be broken down by GI (Glycaemic Index) but for simple terms, let’s look at pasta. You can have your normal or wholegrain, now normal has a high GI meaning that it’s release of energy is very quick into the body, while the wholegrain alternative is low GI and slow releasing. The problem comes when we consume too many carbs than we need, and our body turns the glucose that is excess into fat in our bodies.
Proteins are consumed for growth and repair of the muscles, and given that the body is constantly in a state of repair especially after workouts this is a crucial aspect to make sure a sufficient amount is in your diet. Where this consumption falls too low, especially with workouts maintaining muscle mass, building muscle and repair is a struggle and can lead to a drop in muscle mass.
Fats are often viewed as bad and to be avoided at all costs, now this can be true for certain fats such as trans fats and too much saturated fats. However fats are still needed for our body on a daily basis, to provide essential functions within the body but we need to make sure these are consumed within reason and not to excess. EFAs are especially needed, essential fatty acids include omegas 3,6,9 and omega 3 is particularly important and deficient in many peoples diet, so including foods like fish, seeds and nuts is a great way to get these into your diet.
Our body is a very complex machine, and we also have to think about vitamins and minerals that our body needs, the good thing is we can find many of these in vegetables and fruits. Including these in our diet is a need for the chemical reactions in the body, and one of the most important tips I can give is water. Drink lots of it to keep your body hydrated and provide the foundation for these reactions to occur. If you find water to be a struggle, bland or distasteful then look at adding to it, this can be through fruit or squashes.
So to summarise, we can take a simple view to our diet to being with. If we look to keep our bodies hydrated with good levels of water, and balance out our three bases of carbohydrates, proteins and fats adjusting for days of training, then this can feed into the kickstart of our metabolism. It is especially important to make sure our protein intake is high enough and our
intake doesn’t go into excess.