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Nutritional Consult -- Male Masters Athlete

Posted By: KP
Date: Friday, 11 January 2008, at 7:37 a.m.

Nutritional Consult -- Male Masters Endurance Athlete

Marco -- I know you and I am going to do part of a consult for you. What I don't know is what you are eating or the portion sizes. As always, you will need to use some common sense in these areas. I don't weigh foods or count calories but I have an idea of the glycemic load I am eating at any given time and I watch how much protein I eat. Most of us could use more protein. I avoid processed foods. I usually avoid high glycemic load foods. I currently weigh 188 (training weight / rehab weight) and I race about 180-182 (race weight). Two different things! I eat crazy bad stuff after IMs for a week or two. Oh well // But if you find yourself cracking and going off on binges while preparing for IM, you are likely training too lean and need to add another kilo of weight.

If a reader finds him or herself getting anxious by what I say and has the urge to add in tales about pizza or beer or ice cream, save it. I have heard it all. I've eaten it all. I've read it all. It's been rehashed on chat boards for decades. Do what you want. Tell a friend. Send it to me off line in e-mail if you must; that way I can trash it in private

Marco -- you find yourself gaining weight and having less control over what you eat when you get home, so I suggest that you need to alter how much you eat and when you eat it. Below are some ideas. These are helpful for male masters athletes, who train significant amounts of time and want to lean out and be really healthy. Remember, young athletes (people in general) may be able to eat whatever they want, stay slim, wear tight fitting jeans and race fast. However, that does not mean they are as healthy as possible, or that an athlete could not race even faster if nutritional quality were raised.

1) cut out bread -- all of it // cut out all hydrogenated oils and trans fats // cut out sugar outside training
2) eat more food early in the day. A significant breakfast sets the tone for the day. It increases training quality and sets you up for a comfortable evening. Sometimes we start our day running too lean and risk losing control at 7:00pm. Yesterday I had four eggs, a pound of NF cottage cheese, sesame seeds, a whole avocado, salsa and fruit. I don't know how many calories that is. It doesn't matter. It's more than too little.
3) drink at least a half gallon of water each day, starting first thing and finishing by 3:00pm. Thirst, or the need for water is often recognized as hunger, and we eat. Water will also satiate you. Recall, we don't feel thirst until we have lost about 2% of body weight, but performance degrades at 1.5% loss. Drink more water!
4) graze food throughout the day, arriving at dinner "not really hungry"
5) finish dinner satiated but "not full"
6) I ended my day with small portions of chicken breast in tangerines, salad, vegetables and some bulgur wheat. That's pretty normal for me. I'll substitute fish or turkey for chicken, alter the salads and veggies, mix in some recipes and small servings of rice or cous cous or quinoa.
7) cut out all juices and sodas -- they are almost all sugar (use water)
8. I suggest someone your size look to get over 100g of protein per day (minimum). I take on more than that.
9) I eat lots of good fat through avocados, fish, walnuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, olive oil and coconut oil. I supplement 4-6g cold water fish oils or Omega 3s through a company called Nordic Naturals.
10) we need monounsaturated and essential fats to assimilate phytonutrients and to strengthen and support the immune system. Good fats are also precursors to sex hormones and will support recovery efforts.
11) daily limitations to training are recovery, dehydration and blood glycogen (NO BONKING). Proper nutritional strategies address all three.

coach KP

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