Macro flavour, mi­cro di­et­ing

Forego calo­rie-cut­ting regimes – we’ve got the skinny on how you can get lean with­out bin­ning your favourite food

Trail Running (UK) - - Training -

Many en­durance ath­letes – who tend to over fo­cus, of­ten un­healthily, on weight con­trol – don’t have the best at­ti­tude to­wards food. It’s ei­ther viewed as an en­emy that causes un­wanted weight gain or just as a fuel that has to be con­sumed to keep train­ing. How­ever, food is one of the cor­ner­stones of ath­letic im­prove­ment and per­for­mance. To get strong, you have to eat well and part of that is learn­ing to love, en­joy and cher­ish both the prepa­ra­tion and con­sump­tion of your meals. That’s why the #strong­not­skinny trend is so ben­e­fi­cial; it’s dom­i­nated by peo­ple shar­ing meal pic­tures and ideas across so­cial me­dia.

Qual­ity pro­tein is key for build­ing strength, es­pe­cially if you’re com­bin­ing your strength work with aer­o­bic ex­er­cise such as run­ning. How­ever, this doesn’t mean you can just open a can of tuna and move on. A whole spec­trum of mi­cronu­tri­ents, healthy fats and ben­e­fi­cial chem­i­cals are es­sen­tial for op­ti­mum per­for­mance. With­out a var­ied and in­ter­est­ing diet, which only takes a lit­tle ef­fort, you’ll never in­clude them all and will be com­pro­mis­ing your train­ing.

A word of cau­tion, how­ever: be wary of so called ‘su­per­foods’. There are def­i­nitely kitchen sta­ples that all ath­letes should aim to have in their fridge, but you need to eat ac­cord­ing to the train­ing you’re do­ing, not just re­peat the same meals each day. On in­tense train­ing days, more car­bo­hy­drates are needed to prep and re­fuel; on rest days, your fo­cus should be more on pro­tein and healthy fats. You’ll learn a rou­tine that works best for you – it’s your first step to join­ing the #fit­fam

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