We’re all looking for any tips or tricks that will help us step up our training game. Tips that claim to help you train harder, last longer and recover faster. While some of these tips may have done the trick, guaranteed you’ve tried some out that were anything but performance enhancing. I’m here to share with you the top five worst pieces of mid-workout advice I’ve heard to spare you the time (and stomach discomfort).
Mid-workout Myth #1: Drink lots of water before your workout
It’s important to ensure you’re staying hydrated during exercise. Rather than drinking a mass amount of water before you head out to the gym, field or track, try packing a smaller water bottle that will allow you to take smaller sips of water throughout your workout. Chugging water before your workout can leave you feeling heavy, nauseous, water logged and running to restroom (not an ideal situation when gunning for that winning goal). It also doesn’t hurt to add some electrolytes to replenish the minerals that are lost through sweat.
Mid-workout Myth #2: Do not eat anything during your workout
Say what now? If your training or workout significantly exceeds 60 minutes, you might want to consider re-fueling. Yes, that means eating or drinking something that contains easily digestible carbohydrates during your workout. What does this do? This can help support energy through your workout! AHRENDT, D. M., M.D. (2001, March 01). Ergogenic Aids: Counseling the Athlete. Retrieved April 08, 2016, from http://www.aafp.org/afp/2001/0301/p913.html “It has been suggested that taking proper quantities of carbohydrates at the right time could improve athletic performance by ensuring adequate energy stores are available when necessary.” “Replenishment with carbohydrate-containing fluids during an endurance event may help to delay fatigue.”What foods are great to eat? Step out of your orange slice rut with one of these mid-workout fueling options.
Mid-workout Myth #3: It doesn’t matter what you eat
You know that mid-workout fuel we’ve been talking about? As long as you fuel, it really doesn’t matter what you fuel with!
Yeah. Right. To ensure you’re getting the biggest bang out of your mid-workout fuel, you’ll want to ensure that it’s easily digestible so your body can use it up as immediate energy, rather than tapping out your energy stores in your muscles, causing fatigue. What you eat will set the basis for the amount of energy you exert.
For example, say you were to eat a nutritional bar loaded with fiber, protein, and Omega-3s. While this bar is super nutrient dense, it might not be the best idea at halftime of your soccer match. Fiber, fats and protein all take longer for the body to digest. Why not choose something with simple carbs to support your energy for the game? If you stashed some of those high-carb energy bites in your gym bag and snacked on that mid-workout you just might feel a lot better during the next leg of your training. Just some food for thought.
Mid-workout Myth #4: More is better – eat and drink everything
Drinking or eating too much before or during your workout can leave you feeling sluggish, cramping Feeling “sluggish” hits this “low energy” concept. Eat or drink a small amount of easily digestible carbohydrates before or during workout to support energy through your workout.Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, American College of Sports Medicine, and Dietitians of Canada. (2016). Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Dietitians of Canada, and the American College of Sports Medicine: Nutrition and Athletic Performance. JOURNAL OF THE ACADEMY OF NUTRITION AND DIETETICS. Accessed on 3/16/16 from: http://www.eatrightpro.org/~/media/eatrightpro%20files/practice/position%20and%20practice%20papers/position%20papers/nutritionathleticperf.ashx
Mid-workout Myth #5: Protein should be the only thing you consume before, during, and after your workout
Well....protein is great! It’s the building blocks of your body, it can aid in building and repairing muscle tissue. That being said, protein is slower to digest, and can take up more energy during digestion than simple carbohydrates. Snack on simple carbs for mid-workout fuel.Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, American College of Sports Medicine, and Dietitians of Canada. (2016). Position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Dietitians of Canada, and the American College of Sports Medicine: Nutrition and Athletic Performance. JOURNAL OF THE ACADEMY OF NUTRITION AND DIETETICS. Accessed on 3/16/16 from: http://www.eatrightpro.org/~/media/eatrightpro%20files/practice/position%20and%20practice%20papers/position%20papers/nutritionathleticperf.ashx When needed.
How do you fuel mid-workout?