WHAT YOU SHOULD BE DOING THIS MONTHÉ MOVE 1 IGNORE THE FASTING TREND
“It can negatively affect t r a i n i n g , p e r f o r mance
CHANCES ARE you will have heard of ‘fasting’. Essentially it means delaying energy intake (food) over certain periods of time in an attempt to reduce your overall intake. For example, some may skip breakfast, fasting from the previous evening meal until around mid-morning. This could be a fasting period of around 13 hours.
The inference is that this will result in some weight loss. Yet while this may be true and you could lose fat mass, you potentially lose lean muscle mass too. Simply, less protein less often equals a reduction in anabolic stimulus.
Understandably, this can spell trouble for the serious amateur or elite athlete.
Our nutritionist James Morehen says: “Personally, I wouldn’t suggest athletes implement this during normal training or competition weeks for some key reasons: there is a higher risk of illness as your immune system is weaker, and it can negatively affect training, performance and recovery.
“If an athlete is fasting too close to their performance phase they run the risk of under-fuelling. That means not consuming enough carbohydrates pre-competition to fuel the demands and intensity of the event.”
Morehen also believes that by not taking in key, substantial macronutrients and micronutrients – such as proteins and antioxidants – an athlete’s recovery can be severely hampered. This is a risk as, we all know, fixtures can pile up…
He suggests that if any elite athlete or reader would like to try fasting, they should do so at a time that doesn’t clash with any planned heavy training session or competition. You need the fuel!
You say that fasting can be a bit of a no-no. Are there any nutritional fads we should be looking at?
AThe best advice is to stop looking for a quick fix. We’ve all heard the promises of a ‘new year, new you!’ with detoxes and diets and the next big thing. The truth is that to make meaningful change you must make small lifestyle changes that can become permanent – the thing with fads is that there will always be another one along soon!
Regulars here have read about James Morehen’s rules of ‘Timing, Type and Total’, but have you ever spoken to a nutritionist about your specific goals? You can find details for local nutritional experts or upcoming events via senr.org.uk
Fuel your work Jack Goodhue doing squats