Carbohydrates have been given a very bad reputation of late, mostly by idiots and their “No carbs before Marbs” diets. These diets are completely contradictory to the research and are the last resort of the lazy person.
Carbohydrates, like all nutrients have their good and bad qualities. Good carbs, such as those found in oats, potatoes and sweet potatoes etc are vital for good brain and cognitive function as well as general energy provision for training.
Failure to meet the bodies energy demands through nutrition can actually reverse the hypertrophy effect and cause what is known as “catabolism”, this is when the body actually begins to break down lean muscle tissue to provide energy.
• HYDRATION is crucial, as I’m sure you know already. Most of your body is water, approximately 65% in fact! When you are training regularly and losing water in sweat and urine, you can’t afford to be thirsty. Poor hydration will decrease strength and brain function while cause cramping, diarrhoea, and migraines.
NEVER A GOOD THING! Continue to drink water regularly and increase water intake before, during and after training.
• VITAMINS AND MINERALS are generally just great! They facilitate many processes in the body from oxygen transportation to skin and dental health.
A healthy body will be more able to develop lean muscle and so eating a good variety of fruit and vegetables to keep the levels of essential vitamins and minerals high is much advised!
• FATS, much like carbs have been much vilified of late. The truth is that there are many good fats, such as those found in nuts, many meats and oily fish, which are in fact extremely beneficial in terms of energy provision and cholesterol regulation in the body. To completely try to cut out fat intake altogether is to miss out on some great health benefits as well as a great supply of energy for training!
The best way to reach all of your goals it to have a balanced diet. A proportionate amount of meats, vegetables, fruit and carbohydrates. An increase in protein is advised ;).