Thursday, March 12, 2009

Nutrition Is A Full Time Job

Or is it?

Amongst the many things endurance athletes have to contend with is nutrition. I say "contend with" because for me is more of a job than an adventure. I have to plan my meals and dates with my wife and kids around this carb loading thing.

There used to be a time when the question was asked: "Where (or what) would you like to eat"? and my answer would be an automatic: "Oh, it doesn't matter, you know I like, and will eat just about anything". Life was simpler back then, I left it up to my wife and daughters to pick the dinner menu or restaurant of their choice. Not so any longer.

I don't stress over what I eat, but I do watch what I eat. Miles are piling up as the date to my first marathon gets closer so I have to make sure that I have the right mix of carbs and protein with every meal.

I had been getting very tired the past few weeks. I made an appointment with my doctor just to make sure I was not getting anemic. I also wanted to make sure that the extra stress on this old body was going to be okay. They drew blood and he ordered a treadmill stress test...just to make sure.

The treadmill thing was somewhat funny... to me, not the nurse performing the test. My heart rate wouldn't go where she wanted it so after some nine minutes she cranked the incline to the max. That did it.

Reviewing the results with the doctor he couldn't help but laugh. He told me that the average time (to get the heart rate to max) for someone my age was two minutes. It had taken me 9 minutes and 45 seconds. I smiled. He also told me that the blood test was normal. So we got to talking about my training and eating habits, and then he asked: "what do you eat and when do you eat after your workouts"?

I knew I'd been had. I knew I should have been doing this all along. Recovery food is something you read and are told numerous times. But, NOOOO... attention I paid none. The simple truth of the matter is that I never had the proper nutrition within the prescribed thirty minutes post workout.

As the doctor smiled he knew right then that I knew what I had to do.

I bought a box of EAS recovery, high protein drinks. I started taking one after each and every workout. I can feel the difference.

So for now, is another bowl of pasta for me!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Mauricio,
    Reading your blog is like looking into my future. I am 49 yrs old and doing my first sprint tri's this summer. Training is fun and although I am not ready yet, I am close enough to know I will be. Already thinking about an olympic distance for next year and who knows maybe a 70.3 soon.
    Good luck and happy racing!