In part 1 of this 3 part series, we talked about quality of sleep. We used the metaphor of a car running on a quarter tank of gas, as opposed to a full tank of gas. Getting at least your full 7 hours of sleep will take you much further during the day than a 3 hour nights sleep. Today, in part 2, we’re going to talk about the type of gas you’re putting in your tank. That’s right, nutrition in relation to your recovery. I’m not going to go deep into the dark depths of nutrition right now, as we could be sitting here talking about this for days, maybe even months. Rather, I want to simply pose the question, are you consuming the right things to give your body the proper fuel it needs?
It’s no secret that the more food you eat or even the crappier food you eat makes you gain weight, increases your chances for having high cholesterol, and the list goes on and on. I could sit here all day and list off what bad things food could do for you, but in short, food is your fuel. We measure that fuel through calories. A calorie is simply a unit of measurement for food producing energy in the body. Measuring food through calories allows us to track that energy we consume.
Now, there is not a one size fits all. Levels of caloric intake my vary depending on age, size, and activity level. Also, not all calories are the same. For example, a calorie could produce energy, but not produce any nutritional value. Which leads me into my next point, what does all this have to do recovery? Our body requires certain nutritional value to operate on a daily basis. If you live off of ice cream and bacon, you’re probably not consuming enough protein to replace the amount you burn throughout the day. Greg Glassman laid out a very simple template to follow to make sure you’re consuming the right things your body needs: Meats and Vegetables, Nuts and Seeds, Some Fruit, Little Starch, and No Sugar. Ask yourself, are you consuming these foods in a matter to support your body’s daily activities? If not, do so, your body will thank you.
We’ll certainly come back to nutrition and dive more into recipes, calories, certain foods, macros (protein, carbs, and fat), zone diet, paleo diet, etc. Stay tuned for the final part in this series when we touch on listening to your body.