3 Essentials to Training Success

Written by: Lee on 24th Nov 2010
3 Essentials to Training Success

After a discussion with Mike after our last work out, we thought it would be a good idea to cover these 3 essentials as we ourselves could point out where each was falling short and how that would hamper any long term gains. It’s important to understand that each of the following 3 keys is equally as important as the others. So, what are they? Exercise, rest and diet. Each one impacts on the other as well as your body.

Exercise

Without burning calories your body will store any excess it’s taking in as fat, whether these be from food, drink or junk they all go the same way if your consuming more than you burn. Exercise is also how we tell our muscles what we want them to do, be it tone or grow and they are stubborn little so and so’s that need constant reminding. Finally, we have he feel good factor. This comes from both the chemical release of endorphins and the self belief gained from doing something positive and this feel good factor is one of the keys to stopping comfort eating.

Diet

A word that brings terror to the mind of most, so first of all we’ll make a clear definition. Your diet is simply what you eat, it doesn’t mean jumping on the latest fad bandwagon and only eating soup or drinking milk (2 of the least healthy diets I’ve come across) but being aware of what you consume. There are 3 reasons to watch what you eat, energy, body fat and health. The majority of people know that our energy comes from the food we eat yet most still shovel down junk food, sweets and other rubbish and then wonder why they have no energy. The better quality your food, the more balanced and stable your energy levels. This will leave you feeling better through the day and ensure you have the energy to train. As for body fat, eating more than you burn off is an easy way to put on fat followed closely by eating rubbish that your body simply can’t process properly like refined sugars (sweets). Lastly, health, as with smoking there is enough publicity to make everyone aware of just what unhealthy foods are doing to people. The difference with smoking is labelling. Food manufacturers are sneaky and the best advice I can give is if you don’t understand something on the label, don’t buy it. As a final point on diet, water and hydration levels cannot be ignored. 2 litres of water is a minimum per day and that would be for someone who is completely innactive, if you get out of bed during the day then drink even more.

Rest

Probably the most underrated of the 3 key parts of a healthy lifestyle. Sleep is the time your body recovers and carries out its maintenance as well as refuelling your energy stores. Missing sleep not only deprives you of these vital services but forces the body to search for them elsewhere. The most common solution your body will search for is carbohydrates and fat to top up your energy stores; it won’t want the good types either, but prefer sweets and junk. This will in turn increase your calorie consumption and lead to highs and lows for your energy levels through the day as you constantly eat to try and pull back as much energy as you can. The last thing you want to do when you’ve missed out on sleep is train so please make sure you’re making time for it.

Comments

Best to focus on first?

If these are out of balance, which do you think is best to focus on getting balanced first. There are only so many changes one can make at once.

I have always thought of

I have always thought of those as my physical equation. For me, usually one of those three is out of balance at any one time. I guess balance needs to be my goal!

Thanks for sharing the three

Thanks for sharing the three essentials especially the third point. I know that sleep is important and that the lack of sleep is often attributed to weight gain, and now I know how it works.

Lee, once again a brilliant

Lee, once again a brilliant blog explaining what some of us do not understand completely. For me, if I don't get enough sleep it always snowballs into eating junk and not exercising. They are very interrelated.

I knew sleep was important, I

I knew sleep was important, I just was not sure why. Thanks for this, it makes sense now. I have worked out many times when I was super tired. Being a mom, and working full time plus having active kids that you have to run everywhere makes me tired. I am working on getting more sleep though!

I've added a couple of

I've added a couple of sentences on water since the initial publication, these can be found at the end of diet.

This has to be the most

This has to be the most sensible thing I've read in a long time. You have laid it out in the clearest of terms and I am so glad that you mentioned the importance of "quality" food as opposed to "fad diets".

Much appreciated, thank you

Much appreciated, thank you