Saturday, May 1, 2010

I'm Nuts About You, Food!

I have come to realize that not only am I an exercise dork, but i'm developing into a nutrition dork. Well, it makes sense. Exercise is to nutrition as a pea is to a pod. You can have an awesome workout, but if you don't compensate it with good nutrition it's all a waste. After running 10 miles and then having a Big Mac with a large fry and a Diet Coke defeats the purpose of the exercise. We all know that. So what is a good post run/exercise meal? Depending on the intensity/ duration meals can be tweaked. Running a marathon compared to an intense strength training exercise, energy needs will be a little different. However, in general you want a combination of good carbohydrates, protein, and a little fat (the good type of fat, not the Big Mac fat). The goal is to refuel your energy back to "normal" and not stay in the deficit you created with the workout. Staying in an energy deficit increases an insulin response resulting in slowing your metabolic rate (metabolism), using energy from your muscles to fuel your brain causing muscle loss, and an increase in fat can result from the deficit. Basically, you have to eat to lose weight and stay fit.

Examples of Good Carbohydrates:
1. Brown Rice
2. Beans
3. Whole Wheat Bread
4. Whole Wheat Pasta Noodles
5. Variety of Fruits

Examples of Good Protein:
1. Turkey Meat
2. Greek Yogurt
3. Fish
4. Grains
5. Beans/ Soybeans/ Peas/ Lentils

Examples of Good Fats:
1. Avocados
2. Varieties of Nuts
3. Omega 3/6 (Fish Oil)
4. Pumpkin Seeds
5. Salmon

Remember using anything in excessive amounts doesn't mean it is better. Just because something is good doesn't mean more must be better for you. You can gain weight just as easily off abusing healthier foods. Our bodies are energy first systems. It will take what it needs to compensate for the deficit and then use the nutrients for its purpose. Example: Protein plays a role in muscle repair. If you consume more protein than carbohydrates after a workout your body will use the protein for energy before using it to rebuild muscle. You will want a little more carbohydrates so you body using the carbohydrates first for energy and then use the protein to rebuild muscle. Also, remember skipping meals keeps your body in an energy deficit. Conclusion: Smart consumption is key.

Training Exercise: I love ab exercises, especially since Summer is approaching! I'll say it again, having a good core is key to avoiding problems such as back and hamstring injuries.

Examples of Core Exercises:
1. Planks- Front planks, side planks, side planks while lifting arm and/or leg up in the air, side planks with weight, planks on the stability ball, or plank on the stability ball and lift on foot off the ground.
2. Limited Rotations
3. Stability Ball Rollouts/ Circles
4. Figure 8's with a Kettlebell
5. Kettlebell Swings

Here is a good article explaining why crunches aren't ideal for core exercise. Basically, the repetitive grind of the crunch harms our spines: The Man Who Wants To Kill Crunches.

Training Tip: When a storm is brewing the humidity rises! Yea, my morning 10 miler consisted of an overcast sky, high humidity, and skin abrasions. My tip: With high humidity comes skin abrasions from clothes rubbing on your skin or skin on skin, so use lube. That sounds dirty, hehe. ;)

Training Songs: I'm about to graduate college and it made me think: What songs were popular when I graduated high school? It seems like such a long time ago, I'm getting old. Here are some of the top 100 from 2005. Enjoy!

1. Over and Over- Nelly ft. Tim McGraw
2. Drop It Like It's Hot- Snoop Dogg
3. Sugar- Trick Daddy ft. Ludacris and Cee-Lo
4. Laffy Taffy- D4L
5. Disco Inferno- Nelly
6. Wait (The Whisper Song)- Ying Yang Twins
7. Stay Fly- Three 6 Mafia
8. Soldier- Destiny's Child
9. Get Right- Jennifer Lopez
10. My Humps- The Black Eyed Peas

Upcoming Events:

Countdown to the Northeast Warrior Dash:
21/ 22 Days (May 22, 2010 and May 23, 2010)

Countdown to the AJC Peachtree Road Race:
64 Days (July 4, 2010)

Happy Running,

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