“Abs are made in the kitchen”. So welcome to the kitchen! Nutrition plays such a vital role in not only seeing your abs, but also how your body functions in its entirety. Nutrition plays a role in energy production, regulating chemical processes in the body, disease prevention, mood, brain function, sleep, recovery, and so much more. Food is also so much more than a number, it is fuel, it is social, it is celebratory, and it is cultural.
In recognition of all that food is, Future is here to provide clarity to the confusing landscape of nutrition. We are here to simplify things and help you focus on what is most important to you. Empowering you to make food choices that align with your goals. We will be covering food stigmas - and debunking myths associated, hydration, how to read a food label, and so much more. So buckle up, and let’s learn how to properly fuel the machine that is YOU!
Let’s talk about improving your body composition. There’s two goals I see the majority of the time, increasing muscle mass while maintaining one’s current fat mass, and dropping fat mass while trying to maintain muscle mass.
For the former we’re going to want to focus on protein and carbohydrates, the aim being rebuilding and refueling after your lift. These macronutrients support your body’s repair process and allow you to perform subsequent training sessions day after day. Simply, we are looking to fuel up for your training session (carbohydrates), elicit muscle damage in the gym, recover after your session (protein), then do it again the next day.
For the ladder, we’re going to want to be in a slight calorie deficit, between 250 to 500 calories. There are many hypotheses as to why being in a caloric deficit affects weight or fat loss, what you need to know is that caloric deficits are only successful if adhered to long term. Meaning, a 30 day calorie restriction diet is not going to cut it if you are looking to maintain the results you want - you will gain the weight back. Two strategies to help make a caloric deficit sustainable are, increasing physical activity by 250 daily calories, you will be able to eat more and 250 extra calories comes out to an extra 10-20 minute walk once a day. Another tip is to increase the volume of fruits and vegetables in your diet, take one less scoop of rice and load your plate up with spinach, kale, arugula, bok choy, or swiss chard. These vegetables are very low in calories, high in nutrients and will promote satiety.
If you’re an endurance athlete your best friend in the kitchen should be carbohydrates. As an endurance athlete, you will be primarily utilizing the aerobic energy system in training and races which, surprise surprise, primarily utilizes carbohydrates (and fats) for energy.
You need carbohydrates to fuel your race or training event. Carbohydrates are stored in your body as glycogen which is primarily used for energy when you are utilizing the aerobic energy system. So, eat carbohydrates before your event, use them up during the event, then refuel with carbohydrates after the event to replenish what you just lost. Adjust your portions accordingly with low, moderate and heavy training days.
If your goal is to gain strength look to creatine. When we’re talking about strength, we’re talking about the maximum amount of effort that one can exert in a single bout, high intensity short duration bursts. The energy system that your body uses to allow you to do these short intense bouts is going to be the phosphocreatine system. The substrate that is used to create energy in the phosphocreatine system is creatine phosphate.
There are several ways to get creatine through your diet. Supplementation is what most think of in this regard since creatine monohydrate is one of the most highly researched supplements in the market and is generally extremely safe across the board. Please talk to your doctor before taking any supplement of course.
If supplements are not your jam that’s ok! You can get creatine through food sources such as eggs, red meat, and fish. Creatine is also abundant in plant based foods as well, just make sure if you choose to get your creatine through plants that you are eating a variety of foods including seeds and legumes.
So whatever your goal is, make sure you fuel the right way!
Today we are going to be talking about all things food stigma. Oftentimes in the fitness industry, food can get categorized as either good for us or bad for us. When in reality, each food itself has its own nutritional value and some of them are going to be a little higher and some of them are going to be a little bit lower. But that doesn't mean we can’t include that into our routine occasionally.
Food is definitely fuel for our body. We talk about it for fueling our workouts, for giving us energy. But it’s also a lot of other aspects of our life. It is socializing, it is celebration, it is culture. So looking at it through a more holistic lens, yes we want to feed our body whole nutritious foods that give us that energy, but we also want to have that balance in our life so we can have that cake with our grandma on her 93rd birthday.
So our biggest takeaway here is that we need to focus on that mindset shift. Most of the time we want to fill our body with those whole foods that have a little bit more nutrients in it, but no food are off limits. Especially when we are celebrating someone and spending time with our loved ones.
So next time you come across a thought process that maybe this isn’t the best for me, or this is a bad food, let’s re-wire that thought and think ‘what am I doing with this food?’ or ‘am I celebrating or spending time with my loved ones then?’ Then yes, let’s enjoy that balance, let’s enjoy that meal with them and then we’ll get back into having more of that nutritious food later on.