Pretoria, 27 June 2017: Futurelife nutritionist, Megan Lee, provides some nutrition tips that are guaranteed to keep you healthy and help boost your performance, both in your race training and on race day.
Today marks just over five weeks left to train for the Pretoria SPAR Women’s Challenge race and ladies all over Pretoria are upping their training regime to be race ready by 5 August 2017. To make sure that everyone is making the most of their training routine, Futurelife, an official SPAR Women’s Challenge sponsor presents easy to follow tips on race training nutrition.
Achieving an energy balance requires energy taken in through food and drinks to match energy expended through daily metabolic functions and activity. Sufficient daily energy intake is essential for ensuring that the body is able to perform all necessary functions while still having enough energy to fuel your training but excess energy intake may lead to unwanted weight gain. Thanks to technology, there are great apps and devices available which can help you to better understand your energy requirements as well as intake and expenditure.
Carbohydrates are the primary fuel source for both your muscles and your brain, making them an essential part of any diet, but particularly a training diet. One should pay special attention to the quality of carbohydrates consumed and largely choose wholegrain, high fibre options with a low glycaemic index (GI) such as cooled sweet potato, starchy vegetables, brown rice, low GI bread (many FUTURELIFE® products are suitable here, including both Smart Bread™ variants) and whole wheat pasta.
When you are training hard, reaching your protein requirements needs to be a priority. Protein is essential for many functions within the body, including it’s often most recognised function, muscle protein synthesis. Requirements can usually be met with a well-planned diet, making supplements unnecessary. To optimise muscle growth and repair and make sure that you are getting enough protein, spread your intake throughout the day’s meals, rather than trying to get large amounts at one or two meals. Protein can be obtained from both plant and animal sources, but it is important to be aware that animal proteins, while high quality are often high fat and that lower fat options should be prioritized. Did you know that FUTURELIFE® High Protein Smart food™ provides 30g of high quality protein per 100g. Adding milk to this will further increase protein availability?
‘Micronutrient’ refers to vitamins and minerals, which our bodies require in small amounts daily in order to perform many necessary functions. In some cases active people have slightly increase requirements for some vitamins and minerals, but these can usually be met through increased energy intake and a healthy, balanced diet, without any food group exclusions. Pay special attention to fruit and vegetable intake. Half of your plate should be fresh vegetables as they packed with vitamins and minerals as well as fibre. It’s also important to vary the colours of fruit and vegetables you eat as they are rich sources of phytonutrients (antioxidants, powerful defenders of health). Aim for 5 servings of fruit and vegetables (one to two of each colour) per day.
If you feel for whatever reason that you may not be getting sufficient micronutrients, take a multivitamin at 100-150% of the NRV (Nutrient Reference Value- as indicated on food labels) for each nutrient. Individual micronutrients should not be supplemented without a diagnosed deficiency. FUTURELIFE® HIGH ENERGY Smart food™, FUTURELIFE® HIGH PROTEIN Smart food™ and FUTURELIFE® ZERO Smart food™ provides 100% of the average healthy person’s requirements for all vitamins and most minerals per 100g dry weight.
Around 60% of your body is made up of water and this water is necessary for many functions in the body. If your hydration levels are not what they should be, you will soon see it in your training as you will experience decreased stamina, speed, energy and diminished muscle strength. As a guide it is recommended that we drink 6-8 glasses or 1.5-2l of water per day, this amount will increase with training and should be accounted for. Although water should be our primary source of fluid, we can also fulfil some of our requirements with other drinks and foods such as dairy products, fruit and veg juices and soups. Have you tried FUTURELIFE® Smart Drink™ yet? It has a lot of benefits to offer your sports diet along with valuable fluids. For more information, visit https://smartdrink.co.za/smart-drink-in-sports-nutrition.
Make sure it’s low GI and contains protein, this will provide you with the energy and vitality that you need to do your day! Not only do studies say that it will help speed up your metabolism, prevent you from overeating throughout the day and manage your weight; it will also help you live longer, feel better and ultimately help reduce and/or manage your risk for lifestyle diseases.
Do your homework and start learning what foods you best tolerate before exercise. While there are guidelines around the types of foods to choose, each person is different and a new strategy should never be trialled on race day. Learn what works for you.
Visit the SPAR Women’s Challenge Pretoria Facebook page for more tips from Futurelife. The 2017 Pretoria SPAR Women’s Challenge takes place on 5 August at SuperSport Park Stadium. To enter the Pretoria SPAR Women’s Challenge visit participating SPAR stores or enter online by visiting www.sparladiespta.co.za. Stay on top of the latest race news and show your support by Liking the SPAR Women’s Challenge Pretoria Facebook Page and following @SPARladiespta on Twitter.