Ah carbs and workout nutrition, one minute we’re told they are everyone’s worst enemy, then in a flash they are promoted as every athlete’s best friend. Do we need them or don’t we? The obvious answer for anyone with common sense is yes, we certainly do. Forget Atkins or any other fad diet that claims carbs are the bad guys. This article explains the core reasons that make carbs one of the most important elements in your diet. Here they are:
Pre-workout carbs are essential
Complex carbs like potatoes and pasta are every athlete’s idea of the perfect energy provider because they effectively fuel your body slowly throughout your training session. If having solid food before a workout isn’t an option or even your thing, a preworkout drink provides an easy way to boost the body’s nitric oxide supply to give that extra punch of energy to maximize your workout. The idea is to be able to push for longer and harder. The key to good progress is intensity. The more intensely you train, the better your gains!
Carbs aid muscle growth
Trying to build muscle? You’re probably thinking proteins are the most important thing in the world right now and getting some in after workouts is crucial. Think again. The right dose of carbs would benefit you more. After an intense workout, replenishing depleted carbs actually works to kick start the vital muscle regeneration processes. Your glycogen levels determine how effectively your muscles recharge and prepare for another bout. A post-workout drink with the right combination of carbs, whey protein, glycogen and BCAAs is a much better way to see gains in muscle mass from all hard work put in at the gym.
A lack of carbs can lead to fat retention
If you starve your body of carbs, you’re basically starving it of energy. This can lead to a tendency for your body to store fat as it tries to build an alternative source of fuel. The less energy you have in the form of carbs, the harder you’ll find it to push you limits when you train. To progress effectively, the body should be kept in a fluent state of constant repair and refueling.
Nutritional supplements offer and effective boost to the benefits gained from keeping a balanced diet that is filled with fresh fruits and vegetables. Whatever you do, carbs should make up the foundations of your diet, as they are the essential nutrient that keeps your body in “gain mode”.