Eating the right weight lifting foods can help you tremendously in your training. Hint: Power bars and energy drinks ain't gonna cut it!
Weight training is one of the best methods of strength training! If you want to start weight training safely and effectively, with the best info, diet, and routines, check out the 5 Day Beginner Weight Training Course!
We'll go over the basics of a good strength training diet and specific rules you can start following right now for the best results from your weight lifting.
Carbohydrates are a great source of energy, and you should be using tons of tons of energy in your workout. Make the meal that you have before you workout carb rich for the energy.
During your workout you break down your muscles, which are mostly protein. Be sure to have a meal with lots of protein after your workout to help rebuild your muscles.
James Orvis who wrote Weight Training Workouts And Diet Plan That Work recommends drinking a protein shake within 1 hour of working out, claiming that it can as much as double your performance and the gains you make. I don't know about doubling your gains, but I have found it extremely helpful to eat a protein rich meal after working out.
Carbohydrates are great for long term energy, but it's easy to eat too much of them. And since you will be eating every 2-3 hours, 5-6 times a day, you don't need to eat a ton of them in one sitting.
Space your intake throughout the day and focus on eating lean meats for protein. You're breaking down your muscles primarily, so that's what you need to focus on repairing with your weight lifting food.
Protein only stays in your bloodstream for up to 4 hours. Therefore, eating many small means through out the day keeps protein in your blood to help repair the muscles you've broken down.
Eat your breakfast shortly after you wake up and keep eating small meals at regular intervals. This will keep your metabolism up, and keep you absorbing protein-high weight lifting foods to repair your weary muscles.
Water is awesome, and you should be drinking it all the time. I've found that many times when I think I'm hungry I'll drink some water and actually not be hungry - it's just that I needed a drink.
Carry a water-bottle around with your and drink from it regularly. This will keep you hydrated and functioning at your best.
All these are great guidelines, but don't go overboard. Know that it's hard to eat healthy all the time and don't expect yourself to be perfect.
Set aside a few meals a week where you eat junk food, or have a beer with dinner. You'll not have to go cold turkey on the food you love, and by scheduling it and allowing it you won't feel guilty about notmaximizing performance and trying to live up to unreasonable expectations from your weight training foods.
Supplements are not necessary to getting the most out of weight lifting, but they can help. Take a multi-vitamin to make sure you're getting all the vitamins and minerals that you need.
And if you want a specific weight lifting food supplement for building muscle, try Creatine. It's one of the few supplements that has been shown in studies to accelerate muscle growth.
Bruce Lee was known for drinking small vials of Royal Jelly to give himself energy boosts for fight scenes in movies. I've tried Royal Jelly and, frankly, haven't found it to give me more energy - but try it for yourself if you're interested, and I know I got a kick out of knowing that it was a technique of Bruce Lee's (pun intended).
So, start working these weight lifting foods into your schedule. They're basic guidelines that can be adapted for a variety of situations and start giving you muscle quickly.
Oh, and be sure to sign up for the e-zine Starting Strong to get monthly strength training, exercise, and diet tips e-mailed to you - and access to the free e-book Train Smart, Eat Smart: Exercise Nutrition Hacks!
Weight Lifting Foods To Build Muscle
1. Orvis, James. 2008. Weight Training Workouts And Diet Plan That Work. Crosslake, Minn: Ideal Pub. Pp 17.
2. Ibid. Pp. 20.
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