What to eat, and when

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by crashdummy, Jun 4, 2007.

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  1. Good Evening gents,

    I have found out the hard way that my performance on any specific day is affected hugely by what I've eaten that day.

    I have to plead a combination of ignorance and a dash of stupidity! I can normally reach just over 11 on the bleep test. 10.2 is easily achieveable with being only a little out of puff, normally.

    However, today with only a small bowl of porridge to eat all day, my performance was dire.

    I need to know more. What to eat and when. In mind specifically, my AOSB bleep test in a fortnight. Assuming the MSFT is between 11.00-midday, what should I eat beforehand? How much, and when should I eat in relation to the exercise ahead of me?

    Apologies for the stupid question, but I'm surprised at how drastically my performance was affected, and I don't want it to happen again on the day!

    As always, thanks for your advice!

  2. Basically you want good quality coplex carbs and plenty of water and electrolytes (salts) so you a) have energy and b) can transfer that energy to your muscles. To get the salt mix 1/4 teaspoon of salt with 1 tsp sugar and some water and lemon juice.

    So wake up early, have a big bowl of porridge and a banana (love bananas), a bowl of brown wholegrain pasta a bit later. You probably dont want to be eating later than 1.5 hours before the run as you probably know how crap it feels to run with a full stomach. Have an isotonic energy drink (lucozade or something) about half an hour before.

    I personally would pop a couple of caps of creatine about an hour before doing the test too. It might just be a plecebo but I always do better with such things after taking some creatine and with the sudden direction changes in the bleep test some extra muscle power wouldnt go amiss.

    Take all this with a pinch of salt as I am not an expert, I am just telling you what works for me.

  3. Thanks Jay.

    When you say wake up early, when would you eat all that? It's quite a bit, so I'm guessing that if I take the test at 11:30, I'd want it about 3.5-4 hours beforehand?

  4. Another question also. Is it normal for a person's performance to be affected thus?
  5. Yes, if you haven't eaten enough, you will run out of energy. A lass in my platoon collapsed a few times on runs before we found out that it was because she was 'dieting'.

    Don't forget the fluids too, it won't hurt if you've had plenty of fluids for a day or two beforehand either. Don't overdo it on the day though!

  6. I can assure you that having two boiled eggs with two rounds of buttered toast and tea as a late breakfast followed by a piece of cheese and a glass of water around 6pm is not the recipe for outstanding performance on a run at 19:30hrs
    Breathing heavy but not desperate. Heart rate only 120 after 1.5 miles but no energy left at all beyond the mile stage.

    Do consider that I'm not particularly fit (See the EX_STAB rehab thread) but even so I could tell that there just wasn't energy available to the muscles.
  7. Personally I would be up at 7am for an 11:30 test.. I need ages to wake up.. eat porridge at 8:00 some pasta at 9:30 and spend the rest of the time gently taking on fluids and letting the food settle.

    And yes its perfectly normal.. I went out for a 6 mile run last week after having only a plate of corn flakes 5 hours before.. 1st mile was hell, second was just numbness.. after the 3rd I was feeling so shit I just gave up and walked home. On a good day with sufficient "fuel" I can cover 10 miles at a good pace no problem.. so that shows how important food is.

    From my own experience athletic performance is 50% conditioning and 50% nutrition. If I dont eat well my performance suffers severely. Other people might feel differently but this is how it is for me. I reccomend paying at least the same amount of attention to your diet as you do to your training plan.. one without the other is useless.

  8. crashdummy, I'd leave out the pasta if I were you. And forget the large intake of salt too. A pinch on your tongue washed down with Lucozade or any other isotonic drink is all you need. If you're doing the test at 11:30, you want to be finished with your scoff by 07:30 at the latest. You might also want to consider a couple of those Lucozade glucose tablets about 20 minutes before you begin. They'll give you a bit of readily available extra energy without being heavy on your stomach.

  9. BBear

    BBear LE Reviewer

    You see I think this is a bit weird, maybe i'm just special...

    I've never seen the link between food and performance to be that important in the short term. Maybe I eat properly normally, but I usually go for runs in the morning before breakfast, and never have experienced running out of energy like you've described. Just eat healthily, and remember there's nowt wrong with having a little bit of fat - not big chunky tummy - as emergency fuel!

    Besides, if your AOSB board is hot, you'll do it before breakfast anyways! (I had to last year) If that happens, nutrition advice becomes academic.
  10. Listen to the man.. he seems to know better than I!

  11. AOSB doesn't kick off until 11 or so? My joining instructions tell me to show up between 9:30 and 11, so everyone will have eaten breakfast. The same applied the briefing I took.
  12. Now I'm no medico but as I understand it, you have a blood sugar level that is immediately drawn on by the muscles. The Liver stores carbohydrate for emergency "fight or flight" release into the blood to back up what's already in circulation. Beyond that, you've got to draw on fat around the muscles or keep the blood sugar topped up by absorbing carbohydrates into the bloodstream from the upper intestines.

    Drawing down energy from fat is the hardest thing for the body to do so it happens last. I suspect that once you've used the immediate blood sugar and then the Liver's reserve' that a body that isn't used to having to pull carbohydrates out of the digestive system in short order is going to struggle. I suspect that the digestive system responds to diet and training as much as the rest of the body does.

    Did that make sense?

    PS, Considering how much I drink I ought to have a liver that'd be good for a couple of marathons! :D
  13. What ever happened to rocking up at 0600hrs straight in off the lash, ready for a BFT at 0630. Quick brew and a fag and then off for 8min 45sec individual effort?

    Ah, must be an Airborne thing.
  14. Gods among men! I can only dream of that yet!
  15. That'll be it.