The answer is a definite YES! However, most people who exercise on a regular basis don’t follow nutritional guidelines or are just not aware of the advantages of such action. I might add that eating correctly will actually maximize one’s efforts in getting the best results from a workout.
Just as a car needs fuel in order to run properly, the body needs certain healthy foods in order to achieve best results. The number one nutrient needed by the body is PROTEIN. Muscles grow from protein, which flows into the blood, and settles in the muscles, thus creating maximum results. When your workout session is over, you have a 45 minute window in which to get protein into your system. The most efficient way is a protein shake. It metabolizes quickly, compared with food, which could take up to 1 ½ hours to digest.
Years ago, before I knew about the symbiotic relationship between nutrition and exercise, I wasn’t getting the results I had hoped for, even though I was working out 5to 6 days per week! Once I learned about how the body works, I applied that knowledge to my own body, in the form of protein shakes after a work-out…what a difference! My muscles finally started developing in the way I was expecting.
So, here’s a question I get all the time…” What happens if I don’t ingest protein after my workout?” Well, it’s simple really…protein is stored in the muscles, and your cells are hungry for nutrition, so your body will deplete the protein in your muscles, instead of building more muscle with the new protein you are supplying; you actually negate your workout. So, take the time to drink a protein shake, after your workout, and you will see the difference. After that, you can follow up with foods that contain protein.
In my book, Three Strikes You’re In, I list the meal plan I used to prepare for a body building competition. Besides food that contains protein, I also talk about complex carbohydrates such as, brown rice, wheat breads and yams. Complex carbs will give you the energy you need for a strong workout session. They act as a time released source of energy. Fruits and vegetables are also carbs, but they are simple carbs. They burn up faster than complex carbs, but are also essential as part of the mix of food groups and nutrients necessary for best results.
In my next blog, I will be discussing the frequency of exercise, so stay tuned. I promise you it will be informative.