Food is fuel
Hello all! Today I want to talk about food because I think this is one of the few things we ALL can say we love. As part of my services I offer meal plans and for an extra cost, I also cook and package meals for clients. I do this because along with cost, time is a huge factor for most people to be able to achieve and maintain a healthy and fit lifestyle. I find family, work and other responsibilities get in the way and many people end up putting themselves last. They eat too little or too much too late; they skip meals, and find the cheapest, easiest and quickest foods to eat. The problem is they are not providing themselves with proper essential nutrients the body needs. They are always tired and hungry so they eat more and take caffeine or energy drinks just to make it through the day.
In previous blogs I have given examples of what are the best foods to eat. Theses foods are packed with the most nutrients and vitamins that our body needs on a daily basis.
ow I will give you some guidelines on how much you should be eating based on your body type and activity levels. First I will talk about the three different body types; Endomorph, Mesomorph and Ectomorph.
Ectomorph- An ectomorph is a typical slender male or female. Ectomorphs have a light build with small joints and lean muscle. Usually ectomorph’s have long thin limbs with stringy muscles. Shoulders tend to be thin with little width.
Mesomorph- A mesomorph has a large bone structure, large muscles and a naturally athletic physique. Mesomorphs are the best body type for bodybuilding. They find it quite easy to gain and lose weight. They are naturally strong which helps to be the perfect platform for building muscle.
Endomorph- The endomorph body type is solid and generally soft. Endomorphs gain fat very easily and are usually of a shorter build with thick arms and legs. Muscles are strong, especially the upper legs. Endomorphs find they are naturally strong in leg exercises like the squat.
You should find out what body type you are in order to figure out what type of workout and nutrition plan will work best for you. You can do tests online from sites like “bodybuilder.com” or for a more accurate answer, ask your doctor. Once you have figured out you’re your body type, the second thing that you have to consider is your activity level. Based on these two factors you can figure out your daily micronutrient intake and daily calorie expenditure to lose body fat or gain muscle mass.
Micronutrients are the vitamins and minerals that your body needs. You should have a variety of sources to ensure that you get everything your body needs. That being said I do like to keep things simple and easy and remember that food is fuel. Stick to the basics and the essentials but be flexible and don’t stress because don’t forget that protein is protein (chicken, fish, beef, pork, eggs, lentils etc), carbs are carbs (rice, potatoes, yams, pasta, cuscus etc) and you can never have too many vegetables so mix it up if you like but remember to mostly eat for your body and health and not for taste buds, enjoyment, and comfort.
Yes love what you eat everyday but mostly love the fact that you are fuelling your body and you are eating the right stuff f or the right reasons.
Here are some simple calculations that you can use as a guideline to figure out our calorie intake.
Activity level Multiply bodyweight in pounds
Sedentary (minimal exercise) 14-16 calories
Moderately active (3-4 x per week) 15-17 calories
Very active (5-7 x per week) 18-20 calories
So for example if a 150lb male that is very active, is a ectomorph and his goal is to gain muscle and weight, he would start by consuming 3000 calories (150lbs x 20 cal= 3000 cal)
Note: The endomorph should be consuming the lowest number in each category; the mesomorph should consume the middle number and can even consume the higher or lower number based on goals. Lastly the ectomorph should consume the higher number at the very least. This is a general rule and is not definite.
Please see you doctor and always do research because the more you know about yourself the more in charge you are of your health and fitness goals. Remember you are eating to fuel your body, to make your body run each day and have productive days. Keep your food basic, eat what God created, and ensure you have your essential such as proteins, healthy fats, carbs, starches, fruits and vegetables and of course plenty of water.
This of your body as a high performing machine, you always want to put the best fuel in to it for it to work at peak performance levels.
Dan has been a personal trainer since 2008.