Are Your Food Choices Affecting Your Performance?

Are Your Food Choices Affecting Your Performance?


It is stunning how your food choices can affect your fitness performance. A carefully planned and scheduled eating plan will support any kind of fitness training.


Good menu will also significantly speed up your recovery time making your workouts even more productive.


Eating right is more than just better sport results. You will also reduce risk of developing a number of diseases.


Will you believe that I did not been sick in over 10 years time?


Fact! A good planned diet can improve your performance


Not two people are the same so everyone’s nutrition needs will be different.


Fact! All your training, amount of weight you are lifting, intensity of your trainings will influence your food choices.

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So how to calculate amount of food you need?


Energy for physically active person;


It does not matter if you are an athlete or just a beginner. You need to calculate your energy needs accordingly to your activities.


If you fail to deliver enough energy to your body, you will;


  • perform worse
  • lose muscle tissue
  • feel tired
  • slower your metabolism
  • slower your recovery after exercises
  • increase risk of injuty


Your daily energy needs depend on;


  • your age (older people needs less)
  • body composition (muscle tissue, fat)
  • your daily activity (sitting job, physical job)
  • your exercise programme


Let’s calculate your energy needs;



  1. Calculate your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)


That is energy needed to keep your body working every day


Women: your body weight in kg x 22




10-18 years old (body weight in kg  x 12,2 ) + 746

18-30 years old (body weight in kg  x 14,7) + 496

3- 60 years old (body weight in kg  x8,7)  + 829


Men: your body weight in kg x 24


  1. Determine how active you are



Decide which one fits you.


  • inactive (mainly sitting) – 1,2
  • fairly active (walking + 2 exercise session per week) – 1,3
  • moderate active (3 exercise session per week) – 1,4
  • active (intense exercises more than 3 times a week) – 1,5
  • very active (intense and hard exercise 7 days a week) – 1,7



Take your basal Metabolic Rate score and do following;


  1. Calculate daily calorie needs

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Daily caloric needs = BMR x your daily activity score


If you need to eat fewer calories than your score you will lose weight.

If you will eat more than your score than you will gain weight


  1. Get good quality fuel for training


Your best option here will be right carbohydrate source.


Fact! Carbohydrates are stored in form of glycogen in your muscles (400g) and in liver (100g).


Glycogen from liver will be used to regulate blood sugar levels. Glycogen from muscles will be used to give you fuel during physical activity.


The more active you are and more muscle mass you have, the more carbohydrates you can consume.


Fact! If your carbohydrate intake is too low, you will lose muscle mass, feel weaker and slow down your metabolism.


It is recommended to consume 3-7g of carbohydrates per kg of your body weight each day (that is for low and moderate level activity).


If your training sessions are intense and heavy (1-3 hours) then number will increase to 7-12g per kg of your body weight.


If you exercising a lot (4 hours and longer) you need 10-12 g per kg of your body weight


After your exercise you should consume 1.0- 1.5g carbohydrates per kg of your body weight to recover, repair and rebuild your body.

That amount to be consumed within 1 hour from finishing your training session.


To survive your training sessions include 1-4g carbohydrates per kg of body weight in your pre- workout meal. At least 1-3 hours before training session.


Fact! If you are exercising longer than 3 hours a day your carbohydrate intake should be 90g per hour of exercise (great fuel)


  1. Rebuild with proteins


Proteins are used to rebuild muscle micro injuries that have occurred during and after exercise session. They are also taking part in building new muscle cells.


How much you need.


1.2- 1.7 g per kg of body weight – for active people

0.75 g per kg of body weight – for not so active people


Tip! It is better to spread your daily protein intake throughout the day. Think 20-25 g protein in each meal.


Fact! Mixing carbohydrates with protein after your workout speeds up recovery time.


Many people believe that eating more protein than needed will lead to more muscles and increased strength. That is far from being truth. Exercise and muscle stimulation leads to muscle growth and not extra protein consumption. Too much protein will turn into fat.


  1. How to put it together?


You need 3 meals + 2 snacks = 5 meals each day




Include them in three to five meals each day


One portion = size of your palm = 80g

  • one carrot
  • five cherry tomatoes





Include them in two to four meals each day


One portion = size of a tennis ball= 80g


  • one medium apple
  • one medium pear
  • two kiwis
  • eight to ten strawberries
  • 12 grapes


Grains and potatoes


Include them in four to six meals each day


One portion= size of your clenched fist = 60g


  • bread- two slices
  • roll – one
  • rice – five tablespoons
  • pasta – five tablespoons
  • potatoes – one fist size




Include them in two to four meals each day


One portion = size of deck of cards = 70g


  • poultry – one breast
  • fish – one fillet
  • eggs – two eggs
  • beans – five tablespoons
  • lentils – five tablespoons


FACT! Every active person should consume 15-25g of protein right after the workout to maintain muscle tissue.




Include them in one to two meals each day


One portion= one tablespoon


Nuts – two tablespoons

Seeds – two tablespoons

Avocado – half

Oily fish – deck of cards


The more active you are the more you can treat yourself.

For exercising at moderate or high intensity you can have 200-300 extra calories which may come from: biscuits, cakes, pizza, alcohol, chocolate or crisp.


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