Fuel Your Body
Regular exercise increases the requirement for energy, protein, antioxidants and minerals. The food’s you choose to consume will have a big impact on endurance and how well you exercise. Here are some tips to help reach your optimal performance.
- Enjoy plenty of fresh fruit & veggies. Include a variety of different colours & leafy greens, rich in nutrients & antioxidants. Aim for a minimum of 5 serves per day and an ideal of 7-8 serves. One serve = 1 cup of raw veggies or 1/2 cup of cooked. You can enjoy some of these as a veggie juice but you need to consume raw veggies for the fibre and prebiotics.
- Eat good quality protein with every meal & snack. If choosing animal protein opt for organic & free range. Good quality sources include eggs, chicken and oily fish like trout, sardines and mackerel. Quality plant sources include hemp seeds, nuts and seeds.
- Ensure your diet is rich in essential fatty acids, particularly omega 3 (EPA/DHA), which, help control inflammation caused by exercise. Vegetarian sources include flaxseeds, walnuts & avocado. Oily fish are also a rich source.
- Include healthy fat sources in your diet such as avocado, hemp seeds, nuts, seeds, olives, olive oil, flaxseed oil and hemp seed oil. Always consume these oils cold.
- Muscle aches & cramps are signs of inadequate dietary magnesium. Enjoy plenty of magnesium rich foods, which help to relax muscles. Rich sources include leafy green veggies, unrefined grains & nuts. If choosing a magnesium supplement look for one that includes magnesium as bis- or diglycinate as this is the bioavailable and absorbable form.
- Top up on antioxidants by including superfoods in your diet such as Acai, Maca, Spirulina & Chlorella.
- Drink plenty of water to rehydrate during and after exercise. If you are completing endurance exercise consider a quality magnesium powder to replace electrolytes.
- Consume a low GI carbohydrate snack an hour or two before exercise to ensure your glycogen muscle stores are optimal. This will help provide energy to keep you going during exercise.
- Consume a high protein snack combined with some carbohydrate within 30 minutes of exercise to ensure muscles are replenished and re-synthesised and to replenish muscle glycogen stores.
- High exercise levels can deplete the immune system. If you find you are prone to infections a quality multi strain probiotic can help. Talk to your health care practitioner about choosing the right strains for you.
Try our High Protein Snack Bar recipe, which can also be made into protein balls. Get the recipe here.