Does my nutrition vary when I exercise outside of the gym?

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As we have touched upon previously, there are many ways to tailor your meals and your meal timing to support your intended level of fitness and variety of exercise. This concept also applies when you are outside of the gym setting.

Some typical forms of exercise we utilize on the central coast are running, hiking, kayaking, surfing, playing beach volleyball (shout out to #SundayFunday), playing soccer, baseball, basketball, swimming, the list goes on.

Activities such as these could be done aside from your gym days or they could be included on the days you attend C5 (or your desired gym). Either scenario changes the way you eat to support it.

  • “Active Rest” refers to days when you are participating in moderate to low level activity while otherwise remaining relatively less active for the rest of the day.

    • Participating in one of the above activities on a day like this, reflects the need for more of a rest day eating style. This means still consuming adequate protein though with lower levels of carbohydrates and higher levels of fats in comparison to ‘training’ days.

    • To optimize your performance during your desired activity, focus on consuming a pre-activity meal that is lower in fat with moderate carbohydrates and moderate protein. This will ensure that your energy is used properly for your activity. Then resume the consumption of fats after the completion of the activity.

  • Outdoor training days refer to days when you participate in moderate to high intensity activity instead of attending the gym.

    • Outdoor training tends to incorporate more of an aerobic or cardio style rather than a resistance or strength style of fitness. This means that your body will utilize quick energy stores, but also spend some time burning fat for fuel. Since the stores utilized first are easy to access, they are also easy to refuel.

    • In terms of eating, a pre-activity meal should still be low in fat with moderate protein and moderate carbohydrate, utilizing a mixture of complex (rice, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, etc.) and simple (honey, fruit, coconut water) carbs.

    • A post-activity meal does not need to be super high in carbohydrates since mostly quick energy stores were used along with fat stores. This means moderate protein, moderate carbohydrate, and low to moderate fat as desired.

  • If you are someone who participates in gym training as well as outdoor activities in the same day, your unique level of fitness, chosen activity, training level, etc., will impact and direct your required meal structure and timing.

    • Please feel free to email me with specific questions regarding your INDIVIDUAL AND SPECIFIC situation, as everyone’s vary. (emily@crossfitfivecities.com)

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Your C5 Nutrition Intern,

Wick