It’s been a little while since I’ve taken the time to write a post but I’m back at it and stronger than ever! If you were one of the amazing yogis that attended my Flow Class at Lululemon this past Sunday then you heard my short discussion on the importance of timing your food input. We hear so much about WHAT we need to put into our bodies but very rarely do we hear about WHEN we need to do it. We hear about eating throughout the day rather than just eating three big meals but the timing in conjunction with our activity levels matters too. We must deliver appropriate macronutrients during the time in which our body is ready to use them effectively especially in relation to exercise.

The first time period to consider nutrition is pre-exercise and/or during your exercise. It is important to get a small amount of carbohydrates approximately 15 minutes to one hour prior to the start of your activity if you cannot supplement during the activity. Just about 100 g of simple carbs will do the trick. This will help to improve your performance during your exercise! If you can supplement during your exercise then it is not as essential to get the 100 g of carbs before you start but it is important to get some carbs and if possible protein as well every 15 to 20 minutes during aerobic activity. The best estimate is 30-35 grams of carbohydrates per hour (break that into 4 for the amount you input every 15 minutes, for example 7.5 grams of carbohydrates per 15 minutes). If you are able to add protein as well it should be about 3:1 carbs to protein in your formula. This will improve performance even more than just carbohydrates alone.

The next period to consider is the anabolic phase directly following your exercise. Think of this as your recovery period that immediately follows your exercise. You want to ensure that you get nutrients into your system within 45 minutes of completing your activity. The sooner you can get them into your system the better. By doing this you increase your ability to rehydrate faster, increase the amount of muscle glycogen storage, reduce the amount of muscle damage from your activity and increase the training adaptation or the amount of progress that you get out of your workout. Again, a snack with protein and carbs is the best for you. Some perfect examples include chocolate milk, cottage cheese and fruit or even a peanut butter and jelly sandwich! All of them are pretty portable and easy to take with you in a lunch bag! The ideal proportions are 1.2 g carbohydrates to 0.4 g protein per kg of bodyweight for aerobic and strength athletes.

Often times, individuals are working out because they want to lose weight. Due to this, they do not want to consume calories before or after activity because they fear this will negate the calorie burn of the activity that they just completed. However, this is not the case! Weight loss should be fat loss not lean body mass. If you eat a small snack with proper macronutrient proportions at the appropriate times you will increase your protein synthesis (increasing muscle mass) and you will increase your fat burn! The combination of these will lead you to faster overall weight loss.

If you have any questions on types of foods to eat or what you need to consume for your specific body type please shoot me a message! I am happy to help. Happy day friends!