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The physical and psychological benefits of exercise are indisputable. However, in order to maximise your training sessions and improve your performance, you should have a proper diet and provide your body with nutrients at the right time.
Here are 5 tips you should follow immediately after your training to bounce back like a champ!
Note that these tips apply to sportspersons who train on a daily basis or will perform a second workout during the day. If you train about three or four times a week, no need to worry about your post-exercise nutrition. You will have enough time to recover by following a balanced diet.
You’ve given it all you had, you’ve become very hot and your clothes are soaked in sweat? In that case, you need to replace all the water that your body has lost! To find out how much to drink, you must first calculate the amount of fluid lost. Weigh yourself twice: once before your training and once immediately afterwards, but minus your sweat-soaked clothes.
Each kilogram less on the weighing scale equals one litre of fluid. But the body is unable to absorb all that you give it. That’s why we need to drink a bit more, about 1.5 litres per kilogram lost.
For example: You have lost 1.5 kg, so you should drink slightly more than 2 litres of liquid. Note that the body has a limited capacity to retain absorbed water. It cannot hold more than one litre of water per hour. Sip regularly over a period of two hours (example above).
Electrolytes are essential for the proper functioning of your heart, nervous system and muscles. Many sportspersons sweat profusely during their workout, which leads to a considerable loss of electrolytes.
If your sweating rate is very high, make sure that during the day you consume food that contains sodium and potassium among other things. For example, season your food mildly with salt or include items that provide a bit more (vegetable juice, salted crackers, lean cheese, soup, salted nuts, etc.) and eat foods that are good sources of potassium (fruits and vegetables, dairy products, legumes, etc.)
You need to refuel you machine! While working out, our body draws its energy mostly from its reserves of sugar, known as glycogen. Many organs benefit from your glycogen reserves during training: the muscles to lift weights, the brain to enable you to stay focused and concentrate on your workout, etc.
How can you replenish your reserves immediately after exercising? Consume 1 g of carbohydrate per kg of weight. Foods that contain the most are fruits, starches and milk or its substitutes. If need be, you should refer to the Nutrition Facts Table printed on the packaging of your food. Please consult your nutritionist for more details on the exact amount to consume between your two workouts.
For example: If you are a man weighing 70 kg, you need to consume 70 g of carbohydrates (see table).
After a workout, the body is in a state of “reconstruction” i.e., in an anabolic phase. It is ready to repair and build new tissue. The body needs building “blocks”, which are the amino acids that make up protein. How much should we eat? Although it is often said that three to four times more carbohydrates than protein are needed, the idea is to eat mostly carbohydrates combined with a little protein.
Try to consume a minimum of 7 g of protein in your post-workout snack. Where can they be found? In dairy products, soy products (tofu, soybeans), meats and its alternatives.
The daily diet of a sportsperson is just as important as what they consume after training. The following two conditions should be met to ensure optimal intake of vitamins and minerals:
Good training and bon appétit!
(e. g. for a man weighing 70 kg, who need to consume 70 g of carbohydrates)
See our recipe of Berry Smoothie.
See our recipe of Egg Salad Sandwich.