When it comes to nutriton, there are a lot of voices out there on the internet vying for your attention. Doing a simple search for “best nutrition strategies” can be overwhelming enough to deter you from making the changes that you want to make. Who to believe?!
Everyone is a fitness expert, right? Every new website has a different plan an opinions on strategy shift drastically from month to month. It can be frustrating.
I’ve spent a lot of time online sifting through all the information out there, and at the end of the day, it’s John Berardi that rises to the top. His free articles like The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Nutrition Plans are diamond mines of rock-solid nutrition advice from a guy who has been formally studying exercise science and nutrition for years.
In the following weeks I’ll be featuring 27 tips from Berardi: starting today!
Eat Pasta… Carefully
by Dr. John Berardi
As a God-fearing Italian, I have to admit that I love pasta. But, as a gut-fearing weight lifter and athlete, I definitely have to choose the lower GI, nutrient dense whole-wheat variety. During training phases that require or allow for higher carbohydrate intake (higher volume training) I’ll eat one whole-wheat pasta meal per day. During other phases (like where I’m trying to lose fat), the pasta stays on the shelf in favor of a higher lean protein, good fat, and fruit and veggie intake.
This tip is sponsored by Precision Nutrition – my pick for the best nutrition and supplement resource currently available.
I’ll be honest with you, I am one of the biggest pasta fiends around. When I moved to Portland, I made it a point to try the Mac N Cheese at every restaurant that offered it (what’s with P-Town and Mac-and-Cheese? It’s everywhere!) I think the important part of what John is saying here is the distinction between training phases, maintenance phases and fat loss phases.
Know your goal and plan. Nutrition plans should be adjusted according to your activity levels.
Watch the trap that many endurance athletes fall into and be honest with yourself about the intensity of your workouts. Most endurance athletes that I know eat way more carbs than they need (and usually they’re eating crappy ones according to the “I’m a cyclist/runner/triathlete… I’ll just burn it off!” philosophy).
Julie Berg is an ultra-distance runner who understands this. Check out her daily food log here and keep in mind that she is running races at distances of 100+ miles and usually running 100+ miles per week! (Then subscribe to her blog for cripes sakes, she’s awesome!!)