I have a healthy appetite. There is nothing much I don’t eat; meat, fruit, vegetables, beans, dairy and everything in between, in fact just trying to think of something I don’t like is quite hard.
While I like my food and eat well, I have never had much knowledge beyond the basics about maintaining a healthy balanced diet. So last year when my training stepped up a notch and my desire to eat more did too I did not think this was a problem, assuming I would burn off so much I could pretty much eat what I wanted in whatever quantity. However, the scales told me a different story and while I consoled myself in thinking muscle is denser than fat a quick bit of research on the weight to height ratios of athletes suggested I was probably going in the wrong direction. I needed to know more.
The trouble is with so much conflicting advice about dieting it’s hard to work out what is factually accurate and I was not simply looking for a diet. I wanted to know more about nutrition and specifically how to find and maintain my healthy weight as well as understand how to fuel my body better for training and recover it faster afterwards.
I decided to enrol in a nutrition course to get some more in-depth knowledge. While I am only beginning to scratch the surface of a very big subject I am already seeing the benefits of putting into practice some of the theory. One of the best tips I have is to track your calories and the proportions of protein, carbohydrates and fat you consume daily, alongside the calories you burn from exercise. Now this may sound onerous but made easy using myfitnesspal.com which is a free calorie counter.
For specific information on what to eat, I recommend the “10 mins to change your life - Time to eat well” booklet which is downloadable from the British Heart Foundation website.
To be fit and healthy requires a combination of good food as well as regular exercise so it seems the saying you are what you eat is quite literally true.