You are here

11 Nutrition Strategies to Pop Those Abs...Finally

10. Start right.
Your first meal of the day and your first post-training meal should contain your largest carb intakes of the day. Your body's glycogen stores are depleted when you wake up; promptly replenishing them is crucial to physical and mental functioning, and for firing up the metabolic fat-burning furnace.

Before you eat in the morning, take advantage of this glycogen-depleted state by performing your cardio. Undertaken on an empty stomach, cardiovascular training forces your body to use stored fat as a fuel source, provided your workout intensity isn't too high. This approach allows you to max out your fat-loss efforts. A hint: If you can't speak normally while training, bring it down a notch; likewise, if you don't break a sweat and feel a bit fatigued afterward, you took it too easy.

A serious weight-training session depletes glycogen stores. Consume a mix of simple and complex carbs (along with a protein-rich food) within 60 minutes after a workout for immediate energy restoration and to ensure long-term muscle mending.

11. Finish light.
Your last meal (or two) of the day should emphasize protein, rather than slow-burning carbs such as potatoes and pasta. The carbs you do ingest should be the "wet" kind contained in high-water, medium-fiber foods such as cucumbers, leafy green salads, tomatoes and steamed asparagus. High-fiber, low-water foods absorb a tremendous amount of water, leaching it out of your system; since you can't drink while you sleep, wet carbs allow you to maintain relatively adequate levels of water during the night.

Here's a bonus tip: Get in the habit of eating fish during your last repast of the day. Fish makes for a lighter meal, and it's a good way to replenish aminos while getting essential fatty acids. Fish is healthy as well: The American Heart Association recommends at least two servings of fatty fish (such as salmon and tuna) per week.

Pages

Want more Men's Fitness

Sign Up for our newsletters now.

comments powered by Disqus