April 24, 2009

Eating Before a Workout

Filed under: By Tamra Rosenfeld — Administrator @ 10:33 pm

  Tamra Rosenfeld

Why eat before a workout?

Eating prior to working out can be beneficial to
·        Maximize your exercise performance
·        Provide energy
·        Improve recovery time
·        Help maintain blood sugar concentration

Carbohydrates are stored in liver and muscle tissues and are called upon when blood sugars are low.  The carbohydrates are only stored temporarily and need to be replenished prior to a workout for energy. 

What and when to eat:
If exercise occurs in the afternoon or evening try to have your regular meal 3-4 hours prior to exercise to allow your body time to digest.  Meals should be high in carbohydrates and moderate in protein.  Meals should also be smaller, low in fat, and low in fiber for easier digestion. 

A small snack can be eaten 30 – 90 minutes prior to workout.  The snack should be high in carbohydrates and low in fat.

If exercise occurs in the morning and there is not much time to eat beforehand try having something only consisting of carbohydrates 15 minutes before.  This will help provide energy for your workout.  A sports drink, a few low-fat crackers, or 4-6 ounces of juice will provide enough energy.

If exercise occurs for more than 1 hour a carbohydrate rich snack should be consumed after the hour. 

Examples of high carbohydrate, low fat foods:
·        Small banana
·        Toast with jelly
·        Low-fat yogurt
·        Handful of pretzels
·        4-6 ounces juice
·        Sports drink
·        Cold cereal or oatmeal with skim milk

1 hour after a workout, try to eat a meal rich in protein and carbohydrates to help refuel your muscles and recover from your losses. 

Hydration is very important before, during, and after an activity.  For each pound lost with exercise 16-24 ounces of fluid should be consumed.  Prior to a workout 16-24 ounces of fluid should be consumed and after every 20 minutes 8 ounces of fluid should be consumed.  Water is the best fluid for exercise under 60 minutes.  For longer exercise durations mix water with sports drinks.


Filed under: By Paul Jason — Administrator @ 10:28 pm

   Paul Jason

The Recovery. Part IV.

In early July, about a month after I started the rehab program (and three months after my surgery) I asked the young men working at the rehab center if they thought it would be possible for me to conduct my annual Fifth Avenue Walk in September. I explained that I had started the walks to celebrate my fiftieth birthday and had already enjoyed the experience for ten consecutive years. I really didn’t want to skip this year.  They were cautious in their evaluation, but didn’t rule out the possibility.  The goal of being able to extend the unbroken string of consecutive walks became an added incentive to me to enthusiastically participate in the cardiac rehab program. The twelve-week program would conclude at just about the same time as my anticipated annual walk; with any luck, I could achieve my goal. I also consulted with my cardiologist, who was encouraging.
            Imagine my exultation when, on September 17, 2000, just five short months after my surgery, I lead a group of approximately twenty invitees down the four-mile route  early on a Sunday morning .  As in the case of the prior ten walks, I completed this one in less than one hour. I was ecstatic. The Annual Paul S. Jason Invitational Fifth Avenue
Four-Mile Walk was intact !!!
            But I didn’t deem this to be the crowning glory of my rehabilitation.  I made what I think was my next important decision by determining that I would continue to exercise at this facility. I had gotten to know the people there, including the physicians, and I was comfortable doing any type of exercise there, even if I looked foolish sometimes. The way I looked at it, an exercise program for a CAD victim is a life sentence.  I had to be committed to this for the long haul, and I might as well enjoy the workouts in a conducive, stress-free environment.

            Once again I must confess that I was a late convert to any regularly scheduled, structured exercise program. If you learn nothing else from this treatise, I urge you, whether you have undergone cardiac surgery or not, to try it.  In retrospect, one of my biggest regrets is that I didn’t start years ago. I always had excuses. Not enough time.  Too many other appointments. And on and on.  Well, once you have had cardiac surgery there will be no more excuses, and you will always find the time.  Why not start now and try to avoid the surgery.

            After twelve weeks in the rehab program I was feeling better. Now I was amenable to trying new types of exercise and the exercise physiologists were willing to teach me a number of increasingly more difficult routines, including weight training and balance exercises.  They had excellent gymnastic skills and I was inspired by their willingness to teach me how to improve my strength, flexibility and balance. 

Within a matter of months, their prophecy began to materialize.  I not only regained my pre-operative strength, I started to exceed it.  As the months went by, I was able to exercise with weights I hadn’t lifted in at least twenty years.  I was rolling and twisting and turning in ways that I had forgotten since my teenage years.  And while some of the exercises were hard, they were also fun.  They required concentration on correct form and execution.

            Soon I was performing lunges to strengthen my legs.  And squats.  And balance exercises.  For those of you who may be interested in a description of some of these exercises, I have reserved space at the end of this chapter.  They are just a small sample of the exercises and skills that I learned within a year after my surgery.  I tell you about them because I want you to see that it is possible to rejuvenate yourself.  If I can do it, anyone can do it.  That became my motto at the rehab center.  Other patients (I wish there were another appellation I could use because none of us was currently sick), some of whom had been coming there for years and sticking to the standard routine of aerobic exercise equipment and stretching, thought I was a little bizarre in my efforts and told me so. Nevertheless, I persisted, and, slowly, many became converts and the results were astonishing.  Some are older than me, and some younger; but all of us  came to enjoy our workouts a lot, and became physically fit to boot.  We continue to do our aerobic exercises, but we do these other exercises also. In my case, I have maintained my body weight, my muscle mass has increased, and many people who know me tell me that I look great.  I’m happy to accept their judgment in that regard.

            In March, 2001, I finally took that postponed and long-awaited trip to Costa del Sol, Spain. Every morning, at 7:00 a.m., I walked three miles along the beach.  I couldn’t help but rejoice at my good fortune to be alive, to feel well, and to be in beautiful Marbella, Spain.

            In May, 2001, I had a one year follow-up nuclear stress test. I was psyched for it and worked out hard for weeks prior to the test. The nuclear images showed normal myocardial perfusion. In other words, the blood flow through my coronary arteries was good. I also completed the 4th stage of the Bruce Protocol and achieved a MET level of 12.9.  My maximal heart rate was 165, which is greater than 100% of the predicted maximal heart rate.  My blood pressure rose from 120/70 to 180/90 at peak exercise. I was described as having a “very good level of cardiopulmonary fitness.”

To be continued…

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