March 1, 2013

March is National Nutrition Month

You may not know that March is recognized as National Nutrition Month, sponsored by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.  It's a time for promoting greater awareness around the importance of good nutrition.  As a runner, I'm often guilty of neglecting this important part of my health.  I go through phases of eating very well and others, well...not so much.  Generally speaking, I'm very conscious of consuming fruits and vegetables, low fat dairy and lean meats.  I know that sometimes my diet can be a little carb heavy and I definitely have a sweet tooth, which can be my downfall. 
I'm Blogging National Nutrition Month
The theme for this year's campaign is "Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day."  To me, this means that I need to tailor my diet for my activity level and my personal taste preferences.  I know that I need good sources of protein throughout the day to ensure I'm able to sustain energy levels, especially for my longer runs.  I love Mexican/Southwest food and enjoy a healthy serving of dessert, so I know my weaknesses.

The National Nutrition Month website (on eatright.org) has some great, easy to digest resources including games, quizzes, fact sheets and recommended reading.  There are also some resources focused by topic - kids, women's/men's health, healthy aging, sports nutrition and others.  Of course, I was immediately drawn to the sports nutrition area and found some great information on good snacks for runners

There is a distinction between the nutritional content of what should be consumed before and after a run.  Before a run, it's important to top off the blood glucose stores to ensure muscles have energy (gained through easy to digest carbohydrates) for the workout.  A snack before a workout can help delay "fuel depletion" and that icky feeling of weakness.  The lead time before the workout will determine the size and complexity of the snack; the longer the time before the workout, the larger the snack can be.  You should aim for 15-25 grams of carbohydrates before a workout.

After a workout, the focus should be on refueling to help the body and muscles recover.  Ideally, your post-workout recovery snack should include a mix of protein and carbohydrates: ideally 12-15 grams protein, and 35-50 grams of carbohydrate.  Some examples of good snack options include:
* 8 oz. of low fat chocolate milk
* PB&J Sandwich
* Energy bar (the PowerBar Recovery in Peanut Butter Caramel Crisp is yummy!)

We'll include some additional nutrition resources and tips throughout the month, so stay tuned.  For now, we'd love to hear how you manage nutrition as part of your daily life and fitness endeavors.

{Christine}

Check out the National Nutrition Blog and Facebook page.

7 comments:

  1. I had no idea that it was national nutrition month! Maybe I can use that as motivation to eat better. Also, as a side note - I love all things Disney! I'm bookmarking your blog.

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    1. Thanks Lisa. For the most part, I think we do well with eating, but we both have definite weaknesses.....Pam loves ice cream and Christine loves chocolate!

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  2. What a great wealth of information-thanks for sharing! Just when I've been fussing at myself for overeating while recovering from an injury. Jeff Galloway wrote about this too this morning. I think the "running gods" are trying to tell me something-ha!

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    1. Missed Jeff's post about nutrition....will definitely check that out. Thanks!

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  3. Love this idea!! Thanks for sharing! :0) I have a sweet tooth, too so I feel your pain!

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    1. IThanks Karen! It seems like far more women have a sweet tooth than men. Love a big bowl of ice cream! :)

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  4. This is a good blog. Your blog is very nice and interesting. I like it very much. I will tell my friend about your blog.



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