Tips & Advice from the professional personal trainers at OneLife training gym in Kelowna.
For most people getting to the gym to exercise, and focusing on the purpose of getting fit, is easier than eating right outside the gym. When we’re at the gym it’s our time to focus on ourselves and our training routine. Outside the gym we have a life, a job, or a family to attend to. In our life outside the gym, distractions tend to pull us this way or that way. Fitness and nutrition go hand in hand, regularly eating the right foods is often a large part of gaining lean body mass or losing weight. The fact is that in the gym we are there to stimulate body composition change. Outside the gym is when that change actually takes effect: through proper nutrition and sufficient rest.
Training in the gym makes up roughly 20 to 40% of the effort for effecting body composition change. Building muscle outside the gym makes up more than half the equation to complete the muscle building process or effecting body composition change. It requires more effort and discipline – 60 to 80%. All food (protein, carbohydrates, and fat) can be used for energy, contribute to satiety and is broken down at different rates. Carbohydrates are quickly digested and transformed into glucose, the primary fuel for the body. Protein and fat require more time to digest. They produce energy, but at a more gradual rate.
So how can we effectively make nutrition a part of our fitness and training routine? Learning about the importance pre and post workout meals to fuel your body and integrating proper nutrition into your life will help you to better attain your fitness goals. It takes discipline and planning, but once you integrate this important component into your lifestyle you will be thrilled with the results!
Tips for improving your diet & nutrition:
1) Plan ahead – Meal prep is essential to staying on track. By planning your shopping and preparing your snacks and meals for the week you can ensure that you will stick to your guns and be less likely to fall off track. Meal prep makes eating healthier more convenient and easier to work into your daily routine. When we have busy schedules we tend to do things like hit the drive though or skip meals all together, but when you have your healthy snacks on hand while on the go or a meal all ready prepared when you get home you can avoid these pitfalls. Weekly shopping also gives you the ability to add variety to your diet, because let’s face it you won’t keep up with it if it’s boring. Setting aside a little time in your week to prep will pay off in the long run.
To give you some inspiration, here’s a great list of healthy pre and post workout snacks.
2) Eat REAL food – Be aware of all the “diet” foods out there. If your fitness focus is weight loss, don’t immediately switch everything in your pantry to “diet” or “no fat”. It’s not always about what’s NOT in your food, but what IS… sometimes the term “diet” can be translated into “chemical $&*!storm” as many non-natural ingredients and processes have been used to create the fat-free version. Veggies, fruit, meat, fish, eggs, and nuts are all great examples of real food. Try to stay away from refined, processed, and packaged foods.
3) Not all calories are created equal – Sometimes we get hung up on counting calories or cutting calories from our diet. Your body digests certain types of nutrients differently, using them for all sorts of bodily functions: building muscle, transporting nutrients, fueling various organs or muscles, or storing energy as fat for later use. Structure your meals on the foundations of protein, carbohydrates, and fat.
Protein: When you exercise, your muscles are broken down and then use protein to rebuild themselves stronger while recovering. Protein absolutely NEEDS to be a main component of every meal.
Carbohydrates: When you eat carbohydrates, they get converted to glucose (sugar) in your system, which is then used to provide energy for all sorts of body functions to take place. Vegetables and/or fresh fruit are quality sources of carbohydrates.
Fat: Fat is absolutely critical to your body and should make up a BIG portion of your daily calories. Things like avocados, almonds, olive oil, walnuts, and almond butter are great sources of healthy fat (polyunsaturatured and monounsaturated).
These are just some basic tips, obviously there is so much more information out there and how your diet will be structured really depends on what you are trying to achieve. If it feels overwhelming, just remember you’ve made a commitment to yourself and we are here to help! As part of our services we offer our clients comprehensive nutrition programs along with personal training programs. We want you to succeed, so we use our knowledge & expertise in both the areas of fitness training and nutrition to help you get to the level you’re seeking.