Delay Fatigue and Increase Performance with these 3 Foods
As an Athlete, you’re constantly looking for ways to improve your performance. One way in which you can do this, is by offsetting fatigue, or performing whilst experiencing high levels of fatigue. Managing fatigue is one reason why we train. Once we can do so, we give ourselves a huge competitive advantage, not to mention favourable physical adaptations.
Mother Nature provides us with ergogenic aids. These are anything that gives you a mental or physical edge while exercising or competing.
We’re going to give you 3 of these Ergogenic Aids, that you can start incorporating into your diet today.
1 – DIETARY NITRATES (Beetroots, Spinach, Lettuce)
We can lower the amount of oxygen needed to carry out a given exercise, we can make our muscles more efficient. Dietary Nitrates help to improve muscle efficiency.
A lower oxygen cost for the same work rate, will mean we’re operating at a lower fraction of VO2 Max. What does this mean? That the substances released that make us slow down accumulate less, and as a result, we can perform longer and output more force for longer.
You should look to consume dietary nitrates 2-3hrs before competing. A good source of this is from Beetroot Shots or Supplements that contain Beetroot such as Motion Nutrition’s Organic Pre-Workout Energiser
2 – CAFFEINE (Coffee / Green Tea / Black Tea)
Caffeine is probably the most well-known ergogenic aid.
Caffeine also has the following benefits, which can help us in our athletic pursuits:
- reduce our rate of perceived exertion (we don’t feel like we’re working as hard as we actually are)
- Increase reaction times
- Increase verbal memory
- Increase visuo-spatial reasoning
- Improve mood by increasing serotonin receptors
If using caffeine to increase performance, try consuming 3 to 5mg per kg of bodyweight 30-90mins prior to exercise…A double espresso should do the trick.
Creatine – Meat & Fish
Athletic movments and skill, are can sometimes be characterised by brief, rapid and powerful movements. Throwing, punching, sprinting, lifting weights etc.
In intense movements lasting shorter than a period of 10 seconds, we find ourselves deriving energy from the Phosphagen system. In order to optimise and remain in the phosphagen system, we require creatine phosphate.
So creatine plays a major role in this system, more creatine means an increase in the capacity of this system. This means we improve our performance on short-duration, high-intensity tasks.
Long-duration, low-intensity activities rely more on the aerobic energy system, so they are not typically enhanced by creatine.
Ensure that you’re diet contains meat and fish. Creatine is more prevalent in Red Meat. With creatine, rather than timing, it seems to be a case of ensuring that it is in the system and ready to be used, particularly as it is degraded into creatinine and excreted in the urine at a rate of around 2 grams/day.
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