Are Larger Athletes Able To Use More Carbohydrates During Training?

 

Olympic Games - Womens Team Pursuit

A common question among athletes is whether a larger athlete should eat more carbohydrates hourly during training than their smaller counterpart?

It may seem counter intuitive that carbohydrate requirements could be the same for athletes of different sizes. Most would assume that if you are bigger with more muscle, you would need more carbohydrates during training.

Unlike daily nutrition, where we determine macronutrient needs based on an athlete’s weight, training intensity and duration, when it comes to training nutrition, carbohydrate oxidation rates appear to be determined by absorption rates of carbohydrates through the intestines. Basically, most adults have similar sized intestines, therefor their stature will not be the determining factor in their nutrition during training.

I’ve worked with 120lb athletes who consumed 80-90g/hour during 3-5 hour races and also worked with  180 pound  athletes who consumed 60-70g/hour during 3-5 hour races. Both had done trial and error and found their sweet spot and the carbohydrate needs that worked for them.

Oxidation rates of single carbohydrates for example glucose, consumed alone, max out at about 60g/hour.

Oxidation rates of multiple transportable carbohydrates, ex.glucose + fructose, glucose + maltodextrin,  max out closer to approximately 100g/hour.

Research has demonstrated that ingesting over 105 grams per hour doesn’t improve oxidation rates and may cause GI (gastrointestinal) upset.

The majority of sports nutrition products are using multiple carbohydrate sources (gels, chews, quality sports drinks). As a practical example, the average gel has 30g of carbohydrates and the average sports drink has anywhere from 20g-30g of carbohydrates. Alternatively a whole food such as a medium banana has approximately 25g of carbohydrates.

For moderate to intense “training sessions” over 2 hours of time, consuming carbohydrates does delay the onset of glycogen depletion and improve performance. Carbohydrates can even improve performance in high intensity efforts as short as one hour. This can be related more so to the brain and receptors in the mouth, both of which are still being researched and are  certainly very interesting! This gives you good reason to start that 60-90 minute criterium or time trial with a few mouthfuls of sports drink or a gel on hand.

Find a fueling strategy that works for you during training and execute it during competition for optimal performance. Practice first what you will try on race day as this is never the time to experiment. Also you can train your gut to better absorb carbohydrates with practice, it’s not only your legs and arms that can respond to training, your gut does as well.

Start journalling your hourly carbohydrate intake during different types of training rides, along with how you felt by the end of your session. Assuming all other things were in place (daily nutrition included the proper macronutrient intakes and hydration), work from here. If you were fading during the session or as it was ending, up your hourly intake for the next session. If you were strong until the end, did you need as much as you consumed? With careful journalling of the cause and effect you will find what works for you for particular types of workouts.

Keep in mind that more intensity of your training will affect the oxidation rate of carbohydrates. One hour of high intensity training will use more carbohydrates than the same time training at medium intensity. Not all workouts will be equal in their fuel requirements.

Just remember, don’t look to your left and right on a training ride to determine what your carbohydrate intakes should be, because that light weight rider beside you may actually need more carbohydrates than you do! Focus on yourself and your own nutritional needs.

 

NSAG – Next Level Performance Nutrition

 

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02640414.2011.610348

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Asker_Jeukendrup/publication/43202065_Oxidation_of_Solid_versus_Liquid_CHO_Sources_during_Exercise/links/0f3175339bfd03c667000000.pdf

http://jap.physiology.org/content/108/6/1520.short

 

 

Functional Foods and The Athletic Edge – Tart Cherry Juice

Check out my latest write up in Pezcycling news where cycling meets science. The focus of the article is on athletic recovery using tart cherry juice. From beet juice to tart cherry juice, it seems these functional foods are a real asset to the athlete looking for the extra performance and recovery edge. With science backing up the claims, I know I will be adding these to my arsenal!

Click the link below to be brought to the article. Feel free to leave comments or contact me at nutritionsolutionsag@hotmail.com.

If you are looking for a source for Montmorency Tart Cherry Juice, check out Eden Organics at the link below. Sold at Whole Foods. http://www.edenfoods.com/store/montmorency-tart-cherry-juice-organic.html

Toolbox: Tart Cherries as a Functional Food

Potato and Leek Soup – So you look like you’re “keeping it together” too :)

They'll think you are a chef!

img_1413

 

Sometimes I meet or read about people that seem to have it ALL together. They have 2 dogs or a team of kids, plus a great job, or all of these plus they happen to run marathons!, yet they seem so calm and cool and dinner is always cooked and ready on the table, every night. Kudos to them…seriously I”m impressed!…but I’m definately not one of those people :)!

My life feels a bit more hectic :). Admittedly I DO have oatmeal, eggs and chopped apples with a drizzle of maple syrup for dinner some nights. Ok, eggs may be a staple in our household! Hey, no one said breakfast food had to be eaten in the AM! :). I tend to roll with the punches. But I also TRY to do my best to put a nice warm dinner on the table if and when I can, besides my oatmeal extravaganza 🙂 of course.

For me, cooking in batches is my way of “keeping it together”. I really have come to realize how amazing FREEZING food is! You keep it’s nutritional value for the most part, and you make your life WAY way easier. Yes it too takes time, but if you can carve out 3 hours ? to cook 15-20 meals? To me, it’s worth it!

Even better is when those meals rock! I’m a huge fan of blended soups and soup in general. For several reasons.

1- I live in Canada. It gets REALLY COLD and soup is HOT. Enough said.

2- There are no processed foods in the soups I make. They are wholesome and healthy. I feel good eating them.

3- Soup makes a great gift! Last Christmas I bought some mason jars and bows and made a lovely Sweet Potato

Apple, Curry and Ginger soup  and gifted it to my girlfriends at our annual get together. Made with love :).

4- It freezes well. You can freeze in portion sizes and re heat or thaw in the fridge for when you want it ready

5- It goes great with nice bread. I’m not gluten free, I love my sourdough and I say that with a smile.

6- Most of my soups are vegetarian, all of them actually. The option to use vegetable broth over chicken is yours.

They are also dairy free. Your choice if you want to adjust that for extra creamy soup. I like them without.

7- Soup is great after cold winter training rides. A side of protein and fresh bread and you are recovering and

warming up in no time! Friends will love your post ride soup :).

 

Anyone can make soup. Generally I love recipes that are SIMPLE. Even the non cook can whip these up. REALLY I AM SERIOUS! I do recommend investing in a hand blender, it makes blending them WAY easier and less dishes not using a blender. That just makes the process more difficult in my opinion. Hand blenders are easy to come by and not expensive.

I’m currently obsessed with Potato Leek Soup! The ingredients are simple. Admittedly I have very limited LEEK COOKING EXPERIENCE! None needed, I did just fine. I have to say though you must to clean the leeks well! It’s a non option to use dirty leeks. Leeks often have soil in them so be SURE to open them up and rinse every one under water looking for any grit. If you don’t your soup will be ruined so take the time for this.

Ok. Now the rest is really quite simple!

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 leeks, white and light green parts only, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped into cubes
  • 7 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth – avoid added colors and flavors in the ingredients
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme, (or you can use a tea ball with a few pinches of thyme in it to be removed after cooking)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (option to add more when eating it)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper (to taste)

Start by prepping everything. If you can’t find Yukon just buy yellow potatoes.

Peel potatoes (you can use a carrot peeler).  Chop into cubes, set aside. Remember we are blending this.

Cut the dark green end off the leeks and the brown end leaving the whiter middle part of the leeks. Open and clean well running under water. Don’t skip the cleaning part. Slice leeks in half and then chop into chunks. Set aside.

Prep the bay leaves and thyme, if you have no sprigs then use a tea ball and put 1 tsp into the ball and hang on the side of the pot once you pour the broth in. You will remove the thyme so don’t put it right into the soup.

Chop the garlic. Set aside.

Ok! You are ready. Turn the stove on medium and heat the butter in a soup pot. Once melted add the garlic and leeks. Stir occasionally until the leeks are soft. About 10 minutes. Don’t brown them.

Add the potatoes, stock, bay leaves and thyme sprigs or thyme in the tea ball. Bring everything to a boil, then bring down to medium and let it cook for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are soft when pierced with a fork.

REMOVE THE BAY LEAVES AND THYME. Important! Don’t blend them in.

Let it cool for 10-15 minutes and then take the hand blender to it.

Congratulations chef! This one will be a winner! Option to garnish with fresh thyme and a swirl of cream, but I don’t use the cream personally. I find the potatoes make the soup creamy enough on their own.

TIP: Double the recipe. Yes more chopping BUT also MORE SOUP TO FREEZE and more relaxing nights with less cooking to do :).

 

NSAG – Your Nutrition Solutions Made Simple

shephard's pie1

Sweet Potato Shephard’s Pie! My GO TO Meal!

 

 

 

shep

shephard's pie1

 

Here’s how to create the magic! Serve with fresh ground sea salt on top, just adds that final touch.

Take 5 large sweet potatoes and boil until soft. Peel once cooked and discard the skin. Wait until they cool a bit, careful of the steam.

Mash sweet potatoes in a large bowl with ¾ cup of almond milk and sea salt to taste. Set aside. Butter optional here to mi x in.

In a large pan brown 1 sweet red onion, chopped and 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped, in 2tbsp of olive oil.

Once browned add in one pound of lean ground turkey or chicken, breaking it into pieces until cooked through. Mix in 2 tablespoons of chili powder with the meat mixture. Set stove top on medium, mixing until cooked. Set aside.

Next come the veggies. I use frozen corn, peas and carrots for this recipe to keep it simple and quick. Gather your flash frozen veggies. Get ready to layer the goodness.

In an 8×11 oven safe glass dish first put the ground turkey or chicken mixture on the bottom. Next layer the mashed sweet potatoes on top. Lastly cover with the 3 veggies however you like, mixed in rows etc. You CAN use fresh veggies, but athletes are tired and busy :).

Bake in the oven at 325 for 25 minutes. You can do the veggies first and potatoes on top if you like as well. Up to you!

Let cool for 15 minutes and serve. I love to freeze portions of this as it reheats very well and is a great go to meal!

A great combination of protein, vegetables and wholesome carbohydrates from sweet potatoes.

NSAG – Real food, real simple. Next Level Nutrition!

 

 

Is it the Gluten?

http://www.realclearscience.com/blog/2014/05/gluten_sensitivity_may_not_exist.html

After reading the article link above I had a few thoughts.

An interesting topic indeed. I work with many clients who have intestinal bloating and discomfort and often gluten is not the culprit. We can remove all of the gluten and still it persists. Then we remove all of the FOODMAPS. And it persists. Then we remove…..you get the idea. Perhaps it’s not always the foods, but we do try that route and test it.

There are so many irritants in the foods we eat today but even more so, we must consider the weak digestive systems that many of us have from 10-15 years of throwing garbage into our bodies. Alcohol, antibiotics, sugar, over eating, stress, all negatively affect the digestive tract. We MUST consider STRESS.

And there are HEALTHY foods that cause these issues too. For some it’s broccoli or beans. It’s not always something “bad”. Some digestive tracts simply don’t tolerate beans and excess fiber as well as others. We are not exactly the same and we have all done different things to our bodies over the past 20 years. We are not all built equally. Some can eat a can of beans…some can’t eat 1/4 cup without bloating and gas. We figure those things out.

For some it’s the intensity of sport that gets the GI system bloated. Again, something different and not everyone has these issues.

Sometimes I come across people who are allergic to everything and continue to cut everything out of their diets. The question then needs to be, perhaps it is the BODY, not the foods and if we focus on improving the digestive strength, and slowly re introduce foods, the person may have a different and lesser reaction to many foods.

As I have noted before, the gluten free band wagon is often just that. If you are not celiac and have no reason to be gluten free, it is simply a fad. Avoiding many foods with gluten such as pastries, excess breads etc can certainly improve your health, however that’s not the gluten, that’s the food overall being a low nutrient choice and many of those processed foods also have tons of sugars and additives etc. that can affect your energy and well being. Again, it’s often not the gluten itself.

I’m sure we will see a lot more research over the years in regards to gut bacteria and IBS and GI disorders. I’m hoping there is more investment into research in these areas. For now, keep eating simple clean foods. CHEW your foods well and avoid the artificial everythings. And remember your stomach has no teeth, so when I said CHEW your food, I meant it! Digestion starts in your mouth

 

 

CANDY!

The Taunting Halloween Sweets!

CANDY!

 

Giving out candy this Halloween? Already sneaking a few bars? Here’s my suggestion. 

Of course I could suggest you boycott the day because of the sugar. But I’m realistic. It’s going to happen for a lot of people. 

I suggest you don’t buy chocolate etc. until Halloween day. Once the night is over bring the left overs and donate them to a food bank or give them out the NEXT MORNING. Or give the last spooky costume a whole lotta candy and send them on their merry way!

One if the biggest reasons people eat junk is because it’s IN THE HOUSE. Out of sight out of mouth out of mind. Get rid of it. Have your treat and call it a day!


If you keep it in the house you will battle the fact that you KNOW the little kit kat and snickers bars are sitting behind that wooden cupboard door. You will justify “they are small”. Yet 6 mini bars later you will surely have matched the new jumbo sized version at the corner store.

Don’t kid yourself. You won’t win that battle with the bag of minis!

NSAG – Reality checks

Simple Salmon

Keeping it Simple Can Be Just as Delicious!

Simple Salmon

 

I have many clients who work full time, have kids, train full time (same hours!) and truly don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen. Some people just don’t want to make recipes.

Well the jury is out, you don’t have to! That’s OK! Really it is.

With these clients I work with basic structured simple meals with adequate protein, carbohydrates and fats.

No fancy recipes. A spice rub for the protein is the extent of it. A slice of citrus and if they want a few drops of sesame oil, soy sauce, salt and pepper. To be honest I really like this style of simple clean eating. Always based on whole foods. No fuss. Quick.

Different spice mixes can totally change the protein from maple glazed to blackened and spicy in a jiffy! You can even buy pre made mixes like Harissa or jerk chicken etc. But making them is actually quite simple too!

NSAG – Keeping it simple. All the way to the podium!

It’s CARB Loading not FAT Loading

 

Carb loading does not equate to “eat anything and everything”.

Many carbohydrates such as pastries, muffins, scones and cookies are very high in fat. These are not the types of foods to focus on before a big race or weekend ride. These types of carbohydrates simply add many excess calories. It’s not fat loading. It’s carb loading.

When carbohydrate loading you want to focus on low fat carbohydrate dense choices, such as rice, potatoes, cereals, dried fruit, breads, jams, juices and pastas. Along with hydration from water.

By planning ahead and spreading your consumption evenly throughout the day prior to your race. You will find it’s quite achievable.

You cannot simply carbohydrate load with “a big dinner”. That would be anywhere from 400-700g of carbohydrates!!! By starting in the morning, pre race day, you will prevent you overdoing the dinner portion size in an “attempt” to get it all in one meal. This can leave you feeling ill, causing GI distress or discomfort.

Start early the day before your race/event. Calculate your needs based on the duration of your event and execute the plan.

For all the time and effort you put into your training it would be a sure shame to see it all fall apart due to poor attention to your nutrition. It happens all too often.

Success follows good planning.

NSAG – Planninig for success

Need help with your pre-race day plan? Check out the store on nutritionsolutionsanneguzman.com and select your Race Day Plan by weight. Try it out and see the difference in your results!

I love this!

Pina Colada Smoothie! Part of My Carb Loading Day! Yum!

Carb loading for a 140km ride tomorrow (first one in a year?! Best to follow my own advice! The nutritionist can never bonk on a ride. I don’t have that luxury lol). What’s on the menu? Her’es my favorite item.

The Pina colada smoothie!

2 cups of pineapple juice
3/4 scoop whey protein (North Coast Naturals -vanilla)
1 frozen banana (key is to freeze it! Makes it cold and THICK)
1/4 cup LIGHT coconut milk

Damn that’s good!

Calories: 500
Carbs: 100g
Protein: 20g
Fat: 4g

That’s Podium Nutrition!

I love this!

I love this!

Killer Kale Salad in Under 10 minutes!

Killer Kale Salad in Under 10 Minutes!

 

It’s that time of year when salads are feeling fantastic and bright!

 

Try this Killer Kale Salad! It’s super quick. Anyone could pull this off!

 

HOW TO MAKE THE KILLER KALE SALAD! ( I timed it, it can be quick if you are feeling energized and on the ball!)

 

Step 1: Find your favorite play list and press play.

Step 2: Choose a sunny day, open the windows and let the sun and air into the kitchen, smile.

Step 3: Ignore step 2 if you live in Vancouver

Step 4: Take 6-8 large cooked tiger shrimp. Thaw in a warm bowl of water for 3-5 minutes if frozen.

Step 5: Take 5 cups of kale and rinse. Break into small pieces and place in a bowl.

Step 6: Warm up a 1/4 cup of edamame for 1 minute in hot water. Toss into the bowl.

Step 7: Throw in 2 tbsp of whole grain croutons

Step 8: Chop up 10 cherry tomatoes, toss into bowl

Step 9: Chop up or grate one carrot, toss into bowl

Step 10: Toss in 2 tbsp of shredded asiago

Step 11: Heat shrimp quickly in a pan with blackening spice (key for flavor! Many easy recipes on line including Martha Stewart’s blackening spice mix). I use PC (President’s Choice) Harissa spice mix.

Step 12: Toss shrimp on top of salad

Step 13: Toss in 1 tbsp of dry cranberries or raisins

Step 14; Add 2 tbsp of balsamic vinaigrette and toss well. Can be oil and vinegar or oil vinegar and a bit of OJ and maple syrup to taste.

Step 15: Sit outside, put your sunglasses on, face the sun, make sure a good tune is playing…and dig in!

Optional: Pre-cook cubed sweet potatoes the night before or use left over sweet potatoes from another recipe to up the carbohydrate content and toss in.

 

Great for rest days when carbohydrate needs are lower or add the sweet potato and it’s a regular meal.

Calories: 500 (with the 1/2 sweet potato cubed)

Carbs:  75g or 51g without the sweet potato and 410 calories for the meal

Protein: 27g

Fat: 15g

Fiber:  23g

 

NSAG – That’s Podium Nutrition!