Diet = 75% of Progress
Regardless of your fitness goals, your diet plays an important role in achieving the levels of physical strength, muscle tone, and overall health and fitness you desire. And since most of us have specific results in mind, it’s a good idea to spend just as much time and effort working out a targeted diet as working out at the gym.
For example, the dietary needs of a body builder are very different than those of a person running a marathon. So if you’re looking to build muscle and your exercise regimen doesn’t seem to be delivering to your satisfaction, perhaps it’s time to do a little research and discover which foods will ensure optimum results in concert with your weight lifting efforts.
Here are a few foods that are sure to help you pack on the right kind of pounds.
You might think that any high-calorie foods will be sufficient when it comes to bulking up, but this is not true. Some will add fat as well as muscle, or only fat, and that’s definitely not what you’re looking for.
What you really need are foods that will repair and build your muscles as you add greater amounts of weight to your lifting routine, and your best bet is to use a combination of foods that make a complete and balanced diet that is nonetheless high in certain nutrients. You’ll need plenty of protein to build and maintain muscle, as well as carbs to replace all the calories you’re burning, but you’ll also need fruits, vegetables, and fats (yes, fats) to keep your body healthy and functioning properly.
A good place to start is with eggs. These super foods not only make you feel full longer but they also pack a wallop of protein. And forget all the hoopla you’ve heard about cholesterol. Yes, the yolk has cholesterol, but it also houses the majority of nutrients contained in the egg, so you definitely want to eat it.
When you have a healthy diet and you get plenty of exercise, it’s fairly unlikely that eating eggs will do more harm than good, so make them a staple of your muscle-building diet. You’ll also want to temper your consumption of red meat, so work in more lean meats like chicken, turkey, and especially fish.
Salmon is a particularly good choice since it provides you with omega-3 fatty acids that can reduce inflammation in joints and tissue, lower body fat, and improve heart health. You might also consider adding nuts to your diet for the healthy fats they provide; if you don’t have fats in your diet your body will start storing them. Turns out that peanuts and cashews are slightly more evil than almonds and other nuts, but any nuts are better than a snickers bar.
Fruits and Veggies
Of course, you’ll also need the nutrients found in fruits and veggies, and you want to get the most bang for your buck here since veggies are neither filling nor high in calories. Spinach and other leafy greens are always a good choice because of the many vitamins and minerals they contain and the fact that you can work them into all kinds of recipes.
As for the benefits to your health, spinach not only contributes to a healthy heart, but it also wards off muscle and bone loss (a must if you’re trying to bulk up). And when it comes to fruit, consider an orange a day. They’re not quite as filling as apples, but they are high in vitamin C, which offers all kinds of benefits, not the least of which are boosting your immune system and helping to lower your blood pressure.
Creating meal plans to go along with your fitness goals isn’t easy, but it’s not all that difficult, either, especially when you know which foods will give you the best chance of getting the results you want.
An ideal meal plan is laid out perfectly for you with the Project Shred diet. 7 days of adjustable meal plans, which can be combined and altered for 3 or more weeks, offers you a chance to detox for your daily diet of sugar and chum, and to lose a whole bunch of fat real quick. Give it a chance if you want to drop pounds quick.