When we get busy we tend to sacrifice our nutrition by skipping meals, hitting the vending machine, or finding a drive-thru. When we get hungry and don’t have healthy choices at our fingertips, we become victim to whatever is convenient. Make the healthier choice the easier choice. Set yourself up for success each week by getting in the habit of meal prepping.
Meal prepping is spending one day planning your meals for the week ahead. Having ready-to-go meals in your fridge makes your food choices during the week simple. If your nutrition is overly complicated, it won’t be sustainable. Meal prepping will be your best friend because it makes healthier food choices a no-brainer.
Strategies for meal prepping are to pick one afternoon that works in your schedule to do some bulk cooking (typically Sundays work well for most people). Purchase lean protein sources, vegetables, and starches. Cook your meat, chop your vegetables, hard boil your eggs, ready your rice, and bake your potatoes.
Make sure you have a lot of Tupperware containers on hand. Some people like to portion out their meals in each container. The key is to make sure everything is precooked and easy for you to grab in hurry. Crockpots are a great kitchen tool that will allow you to make a lot of food that you can eat throughout the week. Also, invest in a lunchbox. Find a bag that is insulated that you can pack your food in each day.
Don’t forget about snacks! Have healthy snacks, such as nuts, Rx Bars, whey protein packets, baby food pouches, and beef jerky, stashed everywhere. Put them in your car, bag, and desk. If hunger strikes you’ll be ready for it.
BY: Conner Edelbrock
Why Runners are Obsessed with Chocolate Milk (How Runners make the Post-Workout Simpler)
Heart pounding, legs burning, a runner reaches the final stretch of his race. With an all out burst of speed he crosses the finish line. His legs are rubbery as he stumbles to the scoring table and then off to a cooler in the team tent. Thrusting a hand into the cooler, he grabs up his post-run beverage—chocolate milk.
Runners have a long-standing history with chocolate milk that is actually supported by nutritional science. A pint of chocolate milk contains about twelve grams of protein, thirty grams of carbohydrates, and a few grams of fat. This is an adequate balance of macronutrients after a workout.
Building muscle and recovering requires the body to synthesize proteins. Proteins are large molecules in our systems that perform vital functions. Some of the building blocks for proteins, amino acids, are naturally created in our bodies. The rest are salvaged from the protein we eat.
Carbohydrates serve a dual function. The first function is replenishing energy stores. Carbs are broken down into sugars during digestion and stored as glycogen, a starchy molecule readily available to once again become sugar when our body needs energy. The second function is helping proteins enter our cells to be used. The presence of sugar in the bloodstream triggers insulin release. Insulin signals cells to take in sugar, take in amino acids, and synthesize more protein.
Fats are equally important for recovery, but they are required in much smaller quantities. Fats are composed of lipids. Lipids serve as transportation molecules and give structural strength to cells. Fats can also be used as a slow, sustainable energy source. A few grams of fat are plenty for a post-workout snack.
Getting nutrients after a workout doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. Take a page from the runner’s playbook and grab a chocolate milk.
By Brock Crystal
What do you think of when you hear the word “electrolyte”? Most likely what comes to mind is sugary, expensive and popular sports drinks. They claim to provide us with necessary electrolytes to power us through workouts and keep us hydrated. But what is an electrolyte? Why do you need them? What happens when we have an electrolyte imbalance? Let’s dive in!
An electrolyte is a chemical in the body that regulates bodily functions. They include sodium, calcium, chloride, potassium, and magnesium. Your nerves and muscles depend greatly on these chemicals doing their job and staying in a normal concentration range on the inside and outside of your cells!
Essentially, these electrolytes are responsible for maintaining fluid balance in your body, they play a vital role in muscle contraction (including your heart!), and some also play a role in building protein. This is why you need them. Without calcium and sodium, your muscles will not contract, and you definitely won’t be having a very good workout that day if that’s the case.
So what causes an electrolyte imbalance? Generally a loss of fluid will be the culprit. Loss of fluid can be from sweating or from being sick. This can lead to muscle spasms, weakness, lethargy, and some other serious side effects. Not good!
The good news is, if an electrolyte imbalance occurs due to working out, it’s relatively easy to restore your body back to normal. Yes, those sports drinks will help, but they aren’t the BEST source to replace electrolytes. Food such as bananas, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, watermelon, and pineapple are all great sources to maintain electrolytes.
We take in a lot of these electrolytes every day through the food we eat. Imbalances happen but if you maintain a healthy diet and constant fluid intake throughout the day, with small sips of water or sports drink during your workout, your electrolytes will be balanced and happy!
By Jared Bradford
Today marks the start of our Paleo Challenge 🙂 The challenge will run until April 20th! Wish all our athletes luck with 32 days of NO GRAINS, NO DAIRY, & NO SUGAR (includes soy and processed crap!!)! But think aout all the delicious meals you CAN eat: combining Meat & Vegies has an infinite amount of possibilities! Throughout the challenge and after the 32 days we will have some amazing stories, so stay tuned!
Now, lets take a look at some awesomeness: