Understand the right food for your exercise level to get the shape you desire
This blog will outline how you can fuel your body correctly for exercise and how choosing the right food will satisfy your post workout craving.
Whatever your current level of exercise you need to eat the right food, whether you are sitting on your bum in an office all day or jumping around like a mad hatter fitness instructor very like the one on the Specsavers advert. Getting the right level of food intake can feel daunting, but interestingly eating well and understanding your body has never been easier.
A little tip from the start it isn’t chocolate and white bread 😉
The huge shift in dietary thinking over the last 5 years means that you can trust your body, eat the food your body needs without calorie counting whatever your level of exercise or fitness. This blog will help you to shift your thinking outline how you can bet fitter and healthier.
Over the years of teaching, I have noticed that ‘fitness’ comes in all shapes and sizes, and the female body adapts to the activity you do the most. For instance, the BodyPump athlete with large thigh, the step fanatic with big calves, the stretchy bendy yoga babe who never does any cardio is running on empty and looks like a waif.
You see a runner with great legs and yet she still has a belly or the fitness instructor who has taught 30 classes a week and she still has a belly.
My point being everybody has a different shape and THEN the exercise you pursue and what you eat afterwards has a massive difference to your shape.
The evidence is clear when you join a local running group and the participants still have a belly – the answer is you can’t eat a white bread chocolate sandwich EVEN if you have run a 5k three times this week. So where is the line for you, how much do you exercise and how much do you eat afterwards?
Exercise makes you hungry, so how do you moderate your eating after exercise?
The answer is simple:
- Exercise to keep you healthy, exercise to keep you happy, don’t exercise to lose weight if you are then going to exercise so you can gorge on chocolate and white bread!
- Eat the right food and you will be satiated and full of energy.
- Eat the right food means eat more protein, full fat and great “green” carbs after exercise…. and okay a bit of nicely baked, out of the oven fresh bread if you really want it.
How would it make you feel that you could listen to your body?
How would you feel if you were told that you could eat appropriately and enjoy your food without dieting and without counting calories? How would that make you feel? Distrustful, uncomfortable? Unsure? Sound like a gimmick?
Let me break that down…..
Trust your body and you will eat right….
Learning to trust yourself and your body is a BIG step for most, you have been brought up in a tradition of respecting the professionals, and yet they are the very ones who are issuing confusing food advice.
It isn’t as hard as the ‘professionals’ make out. You can learn some very simple tools and habits that will make listening to your body very very easy. And I promise you it is very empowering.
Whether you are a gym bunny or an occasional walker, you can find your level of eating by following some easy principles.
Stay fit and healthy….
- Keep up 10,000 steps a day
- Exercise 3 x a week – and that need only be for 1/2 hour, but you must get out of breath
- Eat your veg – less fruit
- Add full fat to your diet.
- Eat more protein
- Eat carbs with protein after exercise
Exercising regularly will help your body to metabolise and keep your engine working. Your metabolism is the way your body uses your food to produce the energy it takes to keep all your necessary bodily functions (breathing, digestion, etc) running seamlessly. If you have a sluggish metabolism you don’t need to eat as much.
Eat less fruit and more veg
Fruit breaks down into fructose (not glucose like other carbs) which is difficult for the body to break down. Fructose is digested in the body the same way as HFCS which his found in sugary drinks with added sweeteners like corn syrup
Fructose travels through the same metabolic pathway as alcohol an leads to non- alcoholic liver disease
Keep it simple eat 2 pieces of homegrown fruit a day, berries have low fructose count: strawberries, blueberries and oranges and bananas
Eating more fats
Fats are essential for your body to repair, every cell in your body needs fat simply because it is made of fat. The human brain is nearly 60 percent fat
Several studies have shown that those on a low fat diet with low cholesterol are linked to a depressed mood
Eating more protein
Eating more protein especially in the morning is great to stave off the ‘must eat’ feeling after exercise. Protein during the day will stabilise your insulin and hormone balance. You are not going to get the highs and lows that sugar and insulin give you.
Don’t miss Protein is essential – especially for women
Protein also helps to absorb calcium so is essential for warding off osteoporosis AND eating protein will help build your muscle mass to prevent signs of ageing. The amino acids that make up protein are great for your skin, both in terms of general health and for its ability to repair itself.
Eat carbs after exercise
Carbs consist of vegetables and starchy grain and potatoes, bread etc. So you can have loads of spinach and you are eating carbs – eggs and spinach.
The main reason to consume carbs after your exercise is to replenish the muscle glycogen that you burned during your workout. As you exercise, your main fuel source is muscle glycogen. Glycogen is the storage form of glucose. Research confirms that the best way to replenish muscle glycogen stores after workouts is to consume high-glycemic (fast-digesting) carbs. Your body is depleted of glucose after exercise so feel free to eat your poached eggs on toast, or chilli con carne, or even homemade chips after your exercise.
Eating a combination of protein and carbs after working out will stimulate muscle protein growth, improve your recovery and enhance your performance for your next workout.
Well if it is that easy why isn’t everyone doing it?
Because they have learnt to ignore their body and follow what others are saying. Trust your own body and your own instincts will become clearer when you have the white bread out of your system.
Eat the right food means eat more protein, full fat and great green carbs after exercise…. and okay a bit of nicely baked, out of the oven fresh bread if you want it. Chocolate, of course, is a dietary must for love and indulgence, but that is whole other story 😉
Over to you….
Take your first steps and find the time to put yourself first and explore how you can listen to your body more. Book sometime out for yourself click here
Here is a quick video I put together for those who are joining me to chat, it explains exactly what you and I will chat about
I am looking forward to speaking with you.
Get Gorgeous is a journey together – yours and mine.
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