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Nutrition: FUEL UP AND AFTER WORKOUTS

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Common Scenario:  

Mr. Joe wakes up at 6:30 am.  He takes a shower, gets ready for work and walks out the door with his H3 Peach Orange Smoothie and hard-boiled egg he pre-prepared the night before. He has his 100 calorie metabomeal around 10:30 and a lunch of our Grilled Shrimp Caesar Salad and ½ cup of reheated Butternut Squash Soup at 1:00 pm.  After 2 meetings and hours working on projects, the afternoon snack is skipped and it is time for his personal training session at 5:30 pm.  Mr. Joe doesn’t get home until 7:00 pm, he is hangry, irritable and he doesn’t feel like making the dinner he had set for his meal plan.  Dinner consists of 2 bowls of cereal, a side of ice cream and leftover chicken stir fry.

What did Mr. Joe do well?

  1.  He had a solid start to his day.  Within the hour, he had a balanced breakfast that filled him up with enough protein, healthy carbohydrate and dietary fiber.
  2. He stuck to his meal plan until 1:00 pm in the afternoon.  Mr. Joe set himself up for success until lunch time—he stuck to his late morning metabomeal and made sure to eat every 3-4 hours after waking.  Added bonus:  his lunch was pretty stellar…a filling salad and simply reheating soup he made earlier in the week.
  3. He stuck to his personal training session.  Even though Mr. Joe’s afternoon was busy and perhaps a little stressful he didn’t let that stop him from going to his daily workout.

What could have Mr. Joe done differently?

  1.  Stay on track with mid-afternoon metabomeals.  Mr. Joe knew he had the 5:30 training session.  He could have had a small apple or banana on his way to training—fueling up for his personal training session as well as potentially eliminating post-workout hangriness (hungry, angry and tired—all at the same time).
  2. Include carbohydrates and protein after his workout to promote muscle recovery and prevent out of control dinner portions.  If one knows they won’t be having dinner until 8:00-8:30 pm and the afternoon workouts ends at 6:30 then having a post-workout snack with a carbohydrate and protein source is definitely recommended.  For example, 100 calorie almond pack with 1 cup of blueberries, small container of greek yogurt, 8 oz. low fat chocolate milk, H3 smoothie, Peanut Butter Hummus with 4-5 apple slices or ¼ cup of 1% cottage cheese and ½ cup diced pineapple.
  3. Stick to his original dinner plan.  Mr. Joe created a meal plan for a reason—however, actually sticking to it can be easier said than done.  Again, knowing he had his training session at 5:30 pm, the night before or earlier in the week he could have prepped some of his vegetables, made a nice marinade or cook something quick and healthy.  For example, fish cooks extremely fast…make fish on evenings when you know you don’t have as much time.  Other ideas:
    1. Grilled chicken cutlets (thinner and quicker to cook) with small baked sweet potato and steamed broccoli
    2. Reheated Smoky Frittata with salad greens
    3. Lemon Parmesan baked white fish with reheated brown rice pilaf and sautéed spinach (sautéed spinach is done in 3 minutes or less).
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