NAFC NewsBlast - February 2017 | Ed 4
1 Training Hack You May Have Overlooked
By Tammy LeBoss | thefitprofoodie.com
Our ability to lose weight or to gain lean body mass does not happen in the gym
In fact, those hard-earned gains will take place outside the gym, during sleep. Research shows sleep or lack thereof affects recovery, detoxification, metabolism, and our psychological well-being.
But, do you find you’re moody and not sleeping?
Our bodies need to properly heal and recover in order to grow. Are you giving your body adequate recovery and healing time? When we’re not getting proper sleep, we miss out on optimizing of all of the hard work from our strength-training regimen. If you struggle with getting adequate sleep like millions of Americans, there is one factor you may consider: You may not be fueling the body with adequate carbohydrates. Remember that carbohydrates provide necessary fuel for your muscles and your brain. So removing or limiting them will surely put undue stress on the body and leave the mind ill-prepared for your next workout. Remember that carbs also produce higher levels of serotonin, the body’s ‘happy hormone,’ which is released by the body to promote good mood and better sleep. Serotonin is also a neurotransmitter that gives us the sense of being full after a meal.
While proponents of the low-carb Atkins diet may argue the diet’s benefits,
science has proven that without carbohydrates the thyroid glands and thus, our metabolism are negatively impacted. This also increases cortisol levels as well as the likelihood of depression. When avoiding ‘bad’ carbohydrates, limit or avoid the processed stuff that carries with it a long shelf life. Generally speaking, foods that are stored in boxes with a long shelf life are bad for us. Limiting carbs should not be about dropping body fat nor weight loss. It should be a choice for a healthier lifestyle, and therefore, enjoyed by the body as well as the mind. Remind yourself of the overall end goal: To obtain a balanced diet minus the unbalanced mood swings. For your next workout, rather than pump it up with sports drinks, pump it up with good quality complex carbs such as brown rice, potatoes, yams, and gluten-free oats. Don’t beat yourself up for enjoying a serving size of slow carbs at dinnertime, or even bedtime. And remember, for the greatest nutrient absorption combine this with balanced portions of protein and good fats. Enjoy your food, improve your mood and allow both the body and the mind to heal, without the unnecessary guilt.
Pro Tip for Deep Sleep:
Learn to control your nervous system. Turn off your flight-or-flight mechanism (sympathetic nervous system), and turn on your para-sympathetic nervous response. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be Buddha-like to achieve this. Start by taking 8-10 cycles of full, conscious breaths. Set the right mood. Do this before bedtime and then again upon waking up, and notice the difference.
Lack of sleep can cause hunger, cravings, blood sugar problems, diabetes and thus, weight gain. Learn more about the importance of sleep, performance and recovery in NAFC’s Nutrition Coach course. In the meantime, try these 8 sleep hacks according to Dr. Mark Hyman: https://youtu.be/eJzxciAB5gg always continue learning (get your CEC’s), and you’ll enjoy big gains outside the gym.