Changes In My Exercise, Changes In My Food

In #MOVeat we want to motivate you for move yourself more and eat well to improve your health, as a reader, you become part of this project which is designed for you.

Daily physical activity, exercise weekday, or any sports for fun or as a discipline, will definitely make a difference in your physical, mental and even emotional health, as we have shared over these weeks with you: food plays a super important role to achieve your goals.

What should happen with the way we eat if, for any reason, we changed our exercise routine? The answer is simpler than you think. Our physical activity can be modified by increasing strength, time, resistance or speed; or if on the other side, it decreases if we get sick, we stopped going to the place where we were training, if we travel or took vacation, or if you just have a lot to do or you were invade laziness. In both cases (increased or decreased exercise) our food should be amended in accordance with our goals.

Ideally, the energy you consume through the food is just what you need to spend on different activities you are going to do, and according to your objectives.

  • If your goal is to lose body fat or lose weight you must consume enough for your body, to have enough energy and burn fat when you exercise. Many people stop eating, or eliminate carbs from their diet for example, and do lots of exercise to "go down faster" and ends up happening otherwise, especially when they are dealing with lower fat because the body needs energy to accelerate the metabolism, if you spent lots of energy to exercise and do not consume an adequate amount of food your body will store that little consume of energy as fat because this is long-term energy.

  • On the other hand, if your goal is to increase the weight especially in muscle mass, you must have an adequate intake of energy and protein to help you make the most of the workouts you're doing. Food first, and if it’s necessary to consume a protein shake, that will be better if it is provided or recommended by a nutrition professional, after she or he made a complete nutritional assessment. Not everyone can take any smoothie, not all of the shakes are going to be the best option.

Ideally, seek professional help to determine how much food is recommended to consume according to the exercise you are performing and according to your nutritional goals. And remember that at the time when something changes in your fitness routine you should consult and modify your diet.

Now is the turn of Naty to tell her side of the story:

Something that I didn’t understand much and that was the reason why I felt that I wasn’t good enough at the gym, was that it was directly linked to the way I was eating, of course, I was hoping to make a strong routine with half of the gasoline I needed. Obviously I’d never do this if I continue eating in the same way. I thought that eating a small portion of fruit would be enough for having a good performance and I was wrong.

Well, the thing is that weeks ago, when my routine changed for another one more difficult, I went to the gym with half a banana on my stomach, that is a fruit portion and I thought everything was going to be ok, but it wasn’t. Some minutes after I started working out on my new routine I started feeling dizzy, but I continued, saying to myself that everything was good, until I couldn’t keep on going. The story ended in someone bringing me a candy and my husband going to the gym in order to take me home because I was almost fainting. Besides that tragic episode, my energy during the day was very low, I didn’t get why, because I was exercising almost daily and instead of giving me energy, what I normally hope, it was draining me, my face was dead and my energy was lost. 

Something was wrong, so I went to Sofy as I normally do in this kind of situations.

What I never thought was that I should have told Sofy that my routine was going to change, for her to adapt my eating to the energy that I was going to spend, and that’s what I understand now, and we all should understand: We can’t pretend that our body will make a high effort and we don’t supply it with enough food to waste the energy and keep going. It’s like someone start a “crazy diet” and duplicate the exercising waiting for some good results, things do not work that way, you have to give to your body what it needs in order to spend what we want to spend.

As Sofy tells us, we have to know that your food depends on the activities we have each day. Meaning that a day when I have 2 hour of routine is not going to be the same as a day that I’m not exercising, in that way, you have to adapt your portions. But that is your nutritionist decision; he or she will tell you what and how much you can eat on an active or inactive day. There you go, those are the advantages of physical exercises, and how I’d tell you on other occasions, the one how moves can eat more and win more.

So, it’s your decision, if you don’t move, you’re not helping your body, your mood and you can eat less to maintain your weight, but if you do, you will help your body, you mood will be greater than ever and you can eat more. What do you choose? I choose moving!

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Sofía Ochoa Ávila Dra. Sofía Ochoa, Nutrititionist

Sofy have a degree in Nutrition, shes graduated since 2010, and duly registered at the Association of Professionals in Nutrition with the code 658-10 and owns AyE Nutrition, Nutritional Counseling and Education. She give's private nutritional care and counseling in different nutritional themes and speaks the Costa Rican Sign Language (LESCO).

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Natalia Salazar Graphic designer, art director and professor.

Naty is a designer that at some point in her life, in the middle of wedding plans decided to live a healthier life and the less thing she was expecting was to fall in love with all to that. Now she shares all her experiences at her blog and on social media in order to motivate other people to do the same and continue through this path together.