Updated: Jun 19, 2019
There's a lot of noise out there. The best thing we can do is work to dispel any harmful thoughts or beliefs and prioritize the positive benefits of food.
"Carbohydrates and fat are not great if you want to see results"
Carbs are our main source of energy and at the House, on the turf, your body is mainly utilizing carbohydrate because you’re training at a higher heart rate. When you’re training at a higher heart rate you’re body is low on oxygen. You begin breathing heavier to push out carbon dioxide and pull in more oxygen. As you continue to ask your body to do work it seeks out a quick fuel source that requires the least effort to break down for energy - that’s carbohydrate (vs protein or fat); the body wants to work efficiently and this is how it does it. Fat is not the preferred energy source at this point because it takes more work for the body to utilize it as energy during training (future blog post on Keto coming up). However, fat is necessary. Only a small subset of the population should be following a low fat diet - and no one needs a high fat diet. Fat is used to produced hormones such as testosterone, growth hormone, and estrogen which are all necessary for a healthy body and to see results from your workouts. The amount of carb and fat is different for everyone and their preferred lifestyle. #dontfearthecarb #dontfearthefat
"You need to count calories and macros to see results"
Short answer - you definitely do not. With that said, calories still matter and understanding how much protein, carbs, or fat your body needs is good practice. Pick up a measuring cup once or twice to see what a portion of certain foods are - it can help know when you’re eating out if you’re not getting enough of one things or getting too much of another. Yes, it’s incredibly important to listen to your body, if you’re hungry after training on the Turf you should eat. If you feel satiated after meal put your fork down and save the rest for another time. On the flip side as an athlete you may not feel hungry directly after a workout (it’s a very normal thing) - but at that time you should be pushing protein and carb into your body for optimal recovery. The quick, fast casual meals that I see many people choosing to save time during the work day tends to be low protein (because it’s cheaper and easier for those establishments to sell large amounts of starchier foods). If you only rely on those meals or even skip meals/snacks you aren’t consuming an optimal amount of protein, carb, fiber, or beneficial fats. Understanding macros isn’t about knowing whats so bad about or restricting foods - it’s about making sure you’re getting enough and optimizing your eating habits. I like to education athletes about macros, with the goal of you eating food, not numbers.
"You need to 'eat clean' and boring to see results"
Nope. Untrue. Wrong. “Clean eating” is just a trendy term, it really doesn’t mean anything. You could say, “more whole foods”, “less added sugar”, “lower saturated fat", or "less refined and minimally processed” - those can actually be defined. It’s usually though of as boring though and can be thought of like saving money. If you lead a lifestyle going only back and forth from work and penny pinching, you’ll likely save more money. With nutrition, if you only eat chicken breast, sweet potato, avocado and never go enjoy a meal out with friends - you’ll likely control your calories and maintain whatever your nutrition goals may be. However, food needs to be enjoyed; food is tradition, food is comforting, food is culture. We just need to understand our food and what we need as an individual. The average “unclean” fast casual or restaurant meal can range from 600-1000 calories that may too littler or too much for someone and that should be understand and adjusted for who you are, but by no means should you not eat those foods. I’ll be the first one to tell you to eat your tacos, go out for ramen, grab that sandwich (with a side salad or fruit) - just make decisions that are appropriate for what your goals are. I’m here to help - just ask how you can work that foods you enjoy into your lifestyle.