Nutrition For Optimal Training

Nutrition For Optimal Training

There are plenty of places for people to exercise formally and informally; some go to the gym, take on bootcamp, train and play with the local football and netball club, play midweek tennis, walk around the bluff or take advantage of that vast blue ocean we have on our doorstep. There are also ample opportunities to ramp up your competitive nature with fun runs such as Tough Mudder, the Otway Classic and Run Geelong. Whatever your sport or recreation, good nutrition is paramount to your performance.

Fueling your body for competition or training may not be at the forefront of your thinking. You probably train hard, work with a Personal Trainer or follow a specific training schedule. It is scientifically proven that performance in any exercise is limited by the amount of glycogen in the muscles. Low pre-exercise glycogen stores lead to early fatigue, reduced exercise intensity and reduced training gains.

So, what is glycogen? It is a large molecule, made up of many glucose units joined together. It is also how carbohydrate is stored and is found mostly in the muscles. Unfortunately, there is no endless supply of glycogen, the body can only hold a certain amount and you have to top it up.

The good news is that you get to eat delicious carbohydrate rich foods that are low in fat. Your best bet is to carbo-load within 48 hours before your event with 1-2 grams of carbohydrate per body weight.

Drink plenty of water and you could use a sports drink before, during and after your event to replenish those glycogen stores.

Happy training!

Megan Allender

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