As a health and nutrition coach, people often ask me: What do I eat before I exercise to make sure I have enough energy to get through? What do I eat after my workout to recover? These are important questions, because what you’re eating could be sabotaging your workout results! A one-year Stanford University study of 350 men and women found that those who worked out three to five times a week for 30 – 40 minutes had NO significant weight loss! How can that be? It’s due to what, when and how people eat before and after their workouts. Filling up with the right fuel at the right times is essential to keeping your energy up, your workout performance high, and your body in fat-burning mode!
Top Tips for Fueling for Fitness
• Hydration is more important than you can imagine. Start drinking water as soon as you wake up. In the morning, you haven’t had water for six to eight hours and your cells need replenishing. Drink a full glass of water before you eat or drink anything else (coffee doesn’t count toward hydration). Plain hot water will actually penetrate the cells the fastest.
• Stay well-hydrated throughout the day. It won’t work to just start drinking water right before or during your workout. Hydration is an ongoing process. If you’re not drinking enough water, you will run out of energy – both mentally and physically.
• A daily goal is to drink half your weight in ounces of water each day. If you weigh 150 pounds, that’s 75 ounces a day – more in very hot weather or if you plan to have a rigorous workout. Hydrating regulates your body temperature, replaces water lost through sweat, and helps transport nutrients to your cells so you have energy. Did you know that most people are chronically dehydrated? Dehydration is a key reason for low energy, headaches, poor concentration, muscle cramps, and digestive issues. Take a moment to think about your day-to-day water intake; are you getting enough?
Avoid “Sports” Drinks
Contrary to popular belief (and advertising), Gatorade (or Vitamin Water or Propel or Powerade) is NOT a good hydrating choice, particularly if you want to maintain or lose weight. Why? These drinks contain high-fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners, as well as other ingredients you want to avoid such as food dyes. High-fructose corn syrup, aka sugar, can make you hungrier by increasing your body’s hunger-regulating hormone (ghrelin) and lowering the hormone that tells you when you’re full (leptin). Artificial sweeteners have been shown to increase sugar cravings, and many contain unhealthy chemicals.
Instead, if you feel you need more than water after a heavy workout or in very hot weather, turn to “nature’s water” – coconut water. Choose only those brands that are 100% pure raw coconut water, with or without natural fruit – no sugar added! You can also add Chia seeds to your water for energy! Chia Seeds are known as running food. Chia was first cultivated by the ancient Aztecs who would go on marches for days, surviving only on chia, yet being able to sustain high energy levels. Chia seeds contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, protein, fiber, antioxidants, calcium, magnesium, zinc, and copper. When you put them in water, they plump up and get very soft.
What to Eat Pre-Workout
As a general rule, you want to eat about half the calories you expect to burn during your upcoming workout. Eat 1 ½ to 2 hours pre-workout, and your meal should consist of:
• 60% GOOD carbs (about 40 grams) • 30% CLEAN, LEAN protein (10-15 grams) • 10% HEALTHY fat (less than 10 grams)
• Note that the percentages may vary based on the level and length of your workout.
Good carbs fuel muscles and enable peak performance. They also keep your blood sugar and energy levels stable during your workout.
Clean lean protein prevents the breakdown of muscle for fuel, and gives your muscles a head start on recovery after exercising.
Healthy fats help balance blood sugar and ensure that fat-soluble vitamins are delivered to your cells so your body can use them. Healthy fats also keep your joints lubricated and they slow digestion, allowing for sustained energy and longer workouts.
For Morning Exercisers, here are some examples of a pre-workout breakfast:
• Oatmeal (with no added sugar) topped with walnuts, berries and half a banana
• A protein shake (see recipe below)
• Food For Life Bread (toasted) with pure almond butter and one sliced fruit (banana, apple, strawberries, etc.)
For Afternoon or Evening Exercisers, here are some examples of a pre-workout lunch:
• Steamed vegetables with quinoa
• Brown rice with lean protein and vegetables
• Soup and salad
A balanced meal one to two hours before your workout might be all you need. But some people need a small snack about 30-45 minutes before a workout for an ENERGY BOOST. **Snack examples** include: a banana, a Smoothie (see recipe); a Larabar or Power Bites (see recipe) or other all-natural bar. **You want clean, fast-digesting carbohydrates,** little protein, very little fat, so the fuel is available during your workout. And all meals and snacks should be accompanied by water.
• If you work out first thing in the morning, you will want to have your snack before your workout and your breakfast meal after.
• The larger the meal/snack, or the more fat and protein it contains, the longer you will need to properly digest before exercising. If you consume too much food, or food high in fat, your muscles will focus on digesting that food instead of on your workout. That can cause stomach upset, muscle cramping and deplete your energy.
What to Eat POST-Workout
After your workout is a time for your muscles to rebuild, repair and recover. You should refuel within 15-30 minutes of your workout, and your post-workout snack should have more protein than carbs if you are strength training, and more carbs than protein for cardio exercise.
In the same way that I don’t recommend Gatorade’s ingredients, I steer clear of protein drinks such as Muscle Milk, Boost or Detour. Read the label and you’ll find sugar, additives and chemicals – not what you want to put in your healthy body! Instead, have a post-workout smoothie with plant protein. If you take the time to prepare for your workout – beginning with water in the morning and eating consciously throughout the day – you’ll find that you have the energy to exercise better and longer, and that helps you reach your goals!
Recipes will be posted shortly, there are some good ones up already for smoothies…
This is a quick story of what is going on right now in my life. The reason I am sharing is I want to help empower you to think twice about medical advice when the first course of action is antibiotic use or antibiotic use and a radical trauma that may or may not heal the problem.
My husband was lying down in bed when the kitty (Luce) decided to pounce on his feet! This is something that is common place at our home with the 8 cats (yes I said it out loud) that currently live with us. This particular time Luce scratched Michael’s big toe in the crevasse where the nail goes into the skin. I know that it bled a bit and was painful that night and thought that was the end of it. A few days later I looked down at his foot and his toe was bright reddish purple and HOT! I was astounded he did not say anything to me about it (the big dummy) and so I needed to develop a healing plan ASAP!
We soaked in Epsom salts 2 x day, poured Hydrogen Peroxide over the area and let it bubble and finished with antibiotic cream (which I had to purchase). I put on a band-aid to keep out the dirt and had him wear flip-flops no tennies and thought we were making great progress.
It was no longer reddish purple but still a different color in the pink tones and about the 5th day I noticed a slight swelling along the outside of the scratch extending about 1/4 inch above the toenail towards the knuckle. I didn’t like the looks of that and it was becoming very painful. I did a minor probing that evening with some needle-nose tweezers to see if by chance there was a piece of cuticle under the nail. While doing this I started to peel a bit of the top layer of the inflamed skin to try to open the abscess. My husband did not enjoy this one bit, it was super painful and getting him to hold the flashlight for me and stay still while I create pain was…..let’s just say better for me. I was successful however in opening up the abscess and helped it drain some! I felt that was all that we could do and that needed to be done.
The next day Michael was in pain and he wanted a doctor take a look. The Doctor gave us two options after looking at the toe for 30 seconds both of which seemed a bit radical: The first was a round of hard-core antibiotics plus antibiotic cream and soak the toe in Hydrogen Peroxide 2 x day for 7 days; The second option was to take off the toenail right away to clean the abscess, additionally take antibiotics for 7 days and let the toenail regrow. That was it, the only 2 choices given. This guy was a whack job!
I looked at Michael who was about to pass out on the table after being told that they wanted to rip off his perfectly attached and intact toe nail. I gave him a smile and a reassuring squeeze and told the doctor we were definitely not taking off the nail and secondly my husband needs to proceed with caution regarding antibiotic use due to his battle with C Difficile. I requested that we take the most gentle treatment to move forward with and soak the toe in the peroxide and put an antibiotic cream on. He seemed a bit miffed and said that if it didn’t work in 7 days to come back and he will remove the nail and left the room!
For the first 2 days I filled a shot glass full of Hydrogen Peroxide and had Michael lie face down on the bed with his feet hanging over the edge. I placed a stool under his foot and stuck his big toe in a shot glass full of Hydrogen Peroxide and let it soak for 10 minutes. Boy did it fizzzzzz! Afterwards I put on the cream as recommended by the doctor. I followed the instructions for the first 24 hours. On the second night instead of the antibiotic cream I used doTerra Melaleuca oil. I thought my husband would jump off the bed since it can burn a wound like crazy…..To my surprise it didn’t burn! Recognized by its more common name “tea tree”, Melaleuca has been revered for its cleansing and regenerative properties, especially for the skin. Composed of more than ninety different compounds, Melaleuca has limitless therapeutic applications.
The next day there was a noticeable improvement and the pink color was fading to normal toe color. I added to the oil regimen the addition of lavender and oregano (super hot) oils and again these did not burn his toe at all! Lavender is widely used and accepted for its calming and relaxing qualities. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, used oregano as a cleansing agent as well as for digestive and respiratory support. High in antioxidant activity, oregano contains phenolic acids and flavonoids (dilute when using topically). Not only were we making warp speed healing progress my man smelled like a little herbal drug store!
By Sunday morning the abscess had completely healed from the inside! and all that was left was a callused outer skin with a small little red spot from the night I opened it up with the tweezers.
I will always use antibiotics when I feel they are warranted but what I learned most from this experience is to trust my inner healing goddess (which we all have) and allow my incredible CPTG Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade oils a chance to heal the body more gently.
If you would like any information on doTerra Oils and herbal healing please let me know. I would love to introduce a more natural way of healing for you and your family.
Having a clean house is something that I try to accomplish, or at least most of the time strive for. Over the years I have become more and more sensitive to common household cleaners and chemicals and have noticed as I walked through the cleaning isle of the grocery store my throat becomes scratchy and my nose runs. What I didn’t realize is that I was developing a reaction from being overly exposed to toxic household cleaners and could no longer filter these toxins because my body filters have been on overload.
From cleaning ingredients powerful enough not just to cut through grease and grime, but also human bone and tissue to products labeled “nontoxic” and “green” that are in fact laced with hazardous ingredients, more than a few of the products on the market made Environmental Working Group’s recent “EWG Database Cleaners Hall of Shame” list.
Here are some of the most toxic cleaning products on the market, according to EWG.
• Simple Green Concentrated All-Purpose Cleaner—This product is anything but green. It contains 2-butoxyethanol, a solvent that soaks through the skin and damages red blood cells; even more dangerous is that some people miss the fine print and don’t dilute it.
• Citra-Solv Cleaner & Degreaser—Orange may seem natural, but these sprays contain d-limonene, which can react with ozone in the air to form tiny harmful lung-penetrating particles and the known carcinogen formaldehyde.
• Clorox, Fantastik, Febreze, Formula 409, Mr. Clean, and Spic and Span— EWG says many sprays sold under these brand names contain quaternary ammonium compounds or ethanolamine, compounds that can cause or trigger asthma.
Safer Solution: Create your own potent germ-killing cleaner for pennies by combining nine parts water and one part white vinegar in a spray bottle. For extra-tough jobs, such as those involving raw meat, you can spray hydrogen peroxide (spot-test first) followed by the vinegar solution and kill virtually all germs.
•Whink Rust Stain Remover—A product used to brighten porcelain toilets and sinks, the fine print says, “May be fatal or cause permanent damage.” The product can also penetrate the skin and attack underlying tissues and bone. Is a bright-white commode worth it?
Safer Solution: For natural cleaning, dump half a bottle of white vinegar into the toilet, shut the lid, let sit overnight, and then scrub and flush in the morning.
• Spic and Span Multi-Surface and Floor Cleaner—California is more strict when it comes to toxic compounds, and it’s put a ban on nonylphenol ethoxylate, an ingredient in this floor cleaner that is toxic to the environment and disrupts the hormonal system.
• Mop & Glo Multi-Surface Floor Cleaner—Contains high concentrations of a substance that the United Nations says is “suspected of damaging the unborn child.”
Safer Solution: Spot-test and use the nine-parts-water, one-part white vinegar solution to kill germs on your floor.
• Scrubbing Bubbles Antibacterial Bathroom Cleaner & Extend-a-Clean Mega Shower Foamer—These lung-inflaming products contain 10 percent DEGBE, a solvent banned in the European Union at concentrations above 3 percent.
• DampRid Mildew Stain Remover Plus Blocker— Contains a hazardous solvent and another ingredient banned in European Union cleaners.
• Lysol Disinfectant Power Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Lime & Rust Remover—Sure, this will kill germs in your toilet bowl…but it could also kill you or your pet if it’s swallowed. The acid in the cleaner can also cause irreversible eye damage.
• 2000 flushes and X-14 Toilet Bowl Cleaners—These chlorine-based products are “fatal if swallowed.”
So if you have any of these items in your cabinet possibly its time to do a little greening in your cleaning products. I have found that a little borax, vinegar and olive oil are some pretty strong cleaning agents and will not kill you in the process.
Check out my recipe for an all natural wood cleaner and polish in the healthy homes section , you will love, love, love how it cleans, feeds and brightens your wood and your mood!
As with all days Eat…..Heal…..Live!
Some incredibly important information to read about. Cute bra though..yes?
Now this is some pretty serious stuff here. So much amazing information to learn and it is making things only more clear that your diet play such a pivotal role in your health.
NaturalNews.com is a wonderful resource to get connect with truthful information regarding your health. Here is a link to the website….this will change your life!