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The importance of nutrition cannot be understated. It is vital to living a healthy lifestyle. Also, it plays a key role with your fitness plan.
Here are 5 key points on why you need proper nutrition with your fitness plan:
- FUEL – You need to fuel your body (aka pre-workout meal) in order to crush your workout; and by crushing your workout you’ll burn more calories.
- MAINTAIN – Having the right nutrition helps maintain a healthy body weight. When people limit their food intake (skip meals), they can only do this for a short period of time. Either your body will tell you it’s had enough of you starving it and you’ll get sick or you won’t be able to take it any longer and start binge eating and the weight will start piling on again.
- RECOVER – Proper nutrition will help your body recover from your workout more efficiently and replenish your energy.
- GAINS – The right nutrition after a workout also helps you reap the benefits from your workout (ie. muscle/strength gains!).
- HEALTH – All in all, proper nutrition is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, reduce the risk of chronic diseases and promote overall health.
All this doesn’t mean you should feel guilty with having a piece of cake or two today and having a bottle of wine tomorrow. We’re all human and most of us really enjoy our foods, so if I have a glass or two of wine every night and then have a burger and fries once that week, I don’t feel bad because I know 80% of the time I’m eating well and I’m consistent with my workouts. Enjoy life by choosing moderation not deprivation!
My Nutrition and Fitness Program
When I started my powerlifting program, I struggled to find the right nutrition plan for me. I struggled with the timing of my food and I struggled with the amount of food I needed to eat. My body was not recovering quickly enough after a lift session. I felt tired and couldn’t move the weight when I was training. It made me start to dislike some of my training days (ie. squats!). Finally, I decided to just eat to my hearts content, but at the same time, not stuffing my face that I’m in pain from too much food. I shortly realized my energy levels were higher and I was able to hit more PRs (personal records). I felt like a beast and was so happy to finally see the amount of weight that I could move increase, as well as my strength. During this time, the scale showed a minimal increase in weight of 1-2 lbs. This I attributed to an increase in muscle mass and most likely a decrease in body fat since I felt no changes in the “snugness” of my clothes. Hence why we should NOT be afraid to lift heavy weights!