Imagine you are preparing for a long road trip. How often do you pack the car, check for missing essentials, hit the bathroom, and fill the gasoline tank with water before heading out of town? Never, I hope! Why, because cars don’t run on water. Automobiles use gasoline as fuel and depending on the vehicle, they require a specific octane rating for optimal performance. Similarly, an athlete, specifically a female athlete, should take the same approach to her fueling plan.[Read more…]
It’s true that endurance athletes require more protein than their sedentary counterparts. And while many athletes meet or exceed the recommended daily protein requirement, they may not be distributing their protein intake appropriately. Consuming too much protein can be as risky as not having enough. Excess protein increases the production of ammonia (as a waste product), which the body eliminates via urine and sweat. As a result, ridding the body of ammonia requires adequate hydration to process the waste. Alternatively, inadequate protein intake can negatively affect the formation of hormones and enzymes and hinder muscle recovery/repair post workout.
There’s no denying that endurance triathletes put themselves through intense training loads—all for a good cause, of course, but at what health cost? The purpose of a heavy training load is to improve aerobic endurance, muscle adaptation, and strength, but it also increases oxidative stress, better known as inflammation. Many people don’t realize how much they can reduce inflammation with food!
Inflammation is a bit of a buzzword in health these days but in reality, [Read more…]
I’ve been a registered dietitian for 25 years, and I have yet to meet an athlete who doesn’t struggle with cravings. Unmanaged, cravings can throw a carefully designed nutrition regimen out of whack. Cravings tend to come later in the day, without warning, just when you’ve let your guard down, and can derail an athlete’s daily nutritional balance. One athlete I know describes cravings as a “black hole that sucks me in and I lose complete control of all willpower as I tear through my pantry. It’s demoralizing.”