Fitness: Three Common Fitness And Nutrition Questions Answered

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Michael Ryan 1Michael Ryan of RnR Fitness in Tralee, looks at some common questions asked about fitness and nutrition…

THIS week, in the first week of a 3 part series, I am tackling and answering some of the reoccurring Facebook questions we receive in R&R on a regular basis. They cover a wide range of topics on all aspects of exercising and nutrition. Below are three of the most common questions we receive:

Q: How soon after exercising should I consume food to maximize my training results and recovery?

A: After exercising, your body opens up a 15-20 minute window for which the intake of the right foods and nutrients will yield optimum results from your workout.

The reason for this is naturally produced enzymes in our bodies, which assist the body in muscle tissue repair and regeneration, are at prime condition for receiving nutrients during the first 15-20 minutes post workout.

Any significant period of time after that will lead to diminishing returns in the gains acquired from the work out. Eating at the right time after a strenuous workout also helps to reduce that delayed-onset muscle soreness.

Q: How can I build muscle and reduce body fat at the same time?

It’s difficult for the body to build muscle and lose fat at the same time. Building muscle requires above the norm number (2000 for women 2500 for men) of healthy transferable calories.

If you try to reduce calorie intake to reduce body fat, your body will not have the necessary energy and fuel it needs to give 100% effort during the workout, and not enough nutrients to create new muscle tissue post workout.

Invariably this leads the body to eat into its own muscle storage for fuel to compensate for the calorie deficit you inflict upon it. If your goal is building muscle mass, I recommend increasing the number of healthy calories in your daily intake (depending on your goals), by eating six smaller meals spread across the day.

Your body fat will increase a little but not so much as it takes a long period of time to reduce it. Muscle anabolism requires an increase in healthy daily calories. Don’t try to do two things at once. It will only slow your progression towards your goal.

Q: How many times during the week should I be exercising?

A: This is a difficult question to answer as many people train for different purposes and have varying degrees of fitness levels.

However those new to exercise and  looking to improve their fitness at a steady pace, I recommend no more than 2-3 exercise sessions per week with at least 1-2 days rest and recovery between each session.

This will give your body adequate time to adjust to the new exercise regimen and allow your body plenty time to recover. Start at a pace that is comfortable to you and build up your fitness levels gradually over time.

• Michael Ryan is part of RnR Fitness: Qualified and Certified Personal, Trainers, Fitness Instructors and Sports Nutrition Consultants. See their Facebook page here

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