Fitness Nutrition to Fuel Your Workouts
If you prioritize fitness in your busy schedule, you’ll also know good nutrition is the flip side of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. But zeroing in and really understanding what the nutrients in your daily food do for your workouts or your workday can make a big impact in getting us all the results we want. As March is National Nutrition Month and spring is around the corner, here are a few starters on how to think about fueling your fitness and optimizing recovery.
Supercharge with Superfoods
It’s tempting to skip breakfast when we’re all busy, but it’s not called the most important meal of the day for nothing. Drinking black coffee 30 minutes before exercise has a positive ergogenic effect on our workouts. A breakfast of oats, berries and apples contains a superfood combo of high fiber for heart health and better digestion of other meals during the day as well as antioxidants to reduce inflammation. Add some eggs for protein and muscle building, and whether you’re working out or stuck at a desk, you’re putting the best nutritional foot forward for your day.
Nutritional Metabolism Boosters
Whether you’re trying to lose a little weight or just maintain a healthy status quo, boosting the metabolism can really help maximize what we get from every single workout. And it’s not hard to include metabolism boosters in our daily meals. Caffeine from black coffee or green tea, 500ml of cold water – which boosts the metabolism by 30 percent, fiber from apples, essential fatty acids from seeds and nuts, and Omega 3 from fatty fish all help to fire up our systems naturally.
Antioxidants for Inflammation + Recovery
When you’re done with a workout, find foods that can help repair muscles and reduce inflammation around joints. Many athletes use quercetin supplements to reduce muscle inflammation after intense workouts, but we can get a great dose of natural quercetin from many foods. Apples, onions, broccoli and berries (particularly blueberries) are all rich sources of the inflammation-fighting nutrient.
As with everything, focused awareness can drive real results. Being mindful of what we’re eating is more than half the battle, especially when you consider maintaining a healthy weight is 80 percent nutrition and 20 percent exercise. Eating out, traveling for work or vacation and busy weeknight schedules are the major problem points for many of us, so applying attention to what’s on the plate can go a long way to create better habits for the long term.