Healthy eating and physical exercise are the golden rules to ensure good health and a steady weight.
Nutrition should be part of your lifestyle, it is your best ally for keeping in shape all day long.
Here are five nutrition tips to follow so you can keep going from morning to evening whilst exercising during the day.
1 - Eat your meals at regular times
Mealtimes structure our day and provide our bodies with a regular supply of energy. They should be eaten at regular times to accustom our bodies to preparing to digest properly.
2 – Take the time to eat
When we eat, signals are sent to the brain to let it know that we are eating. From this point, it is thought that it takes 20 minutes to feel like we have eaten enough. Taking the time to eat therefore helps to control intake.
3 - Have a real breakfast
Whether you have a day ahead with or without exercise, whatever your exercise intensity, breakfast plays an essential role in the structure of your day.
There are still too many cyclists who don't eat breakfast. Yet, this meal affects how the day runs. It should consist of starches (bread, cereal, etc.), a dairy product, fruit or fruit juice and a hot drink. Breakfast that is too low in terms of intake can lead to a drop in alertness, attention and concentration due to an onset of
hypoglycaemia. Breakfast should represent 25% of your calorie intake for the day.
Without breakfast, your sports session for the morning or between midday and 2pm will be affected and performance reduced.
4 - Opt for a varied and balanced diet
A balanced diet covers virtually all requirements in terms of energy, vitamins and minerals. The aim of a diet is to keep us healthy as well as optimising our training session.
A balanced diet is not built around a single meal but several: breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner. It comprises:
- Starches (pasta, rice, semolina, potatoes, bread, etc.): in every meal to top up your energy
- Meat, fish, eggs: once or twice a day to provide protein.
- Fruit and vegetables: at least 5 per day, for their vitamins, fibre, and water.
- Dairy products: 3 per day for protein and calcium.
- Fats: should be limited but not excluded, they provide lipids and vitamins.
- Sugary foods: should be limited but not necessarily excluded. They are enjoyable, and we should remember that food is, above all, a pleasure (that we need to control ;-) )
- Water: Drink as much as you like.
5 - Stay well hydrated
On average we lose 3 litres of water per day that must be offset to avoid dehydration. How do you offset it? With food and water. It is thought that food supplies the body with 1.5 litres of water, we must therefore drink 1.5 litres per day to make up for losses.
Drinking regularly throughout the day is the best way to avoid dehydration. This loss of water intensifies with exercise. It is essential to drink before, during and after working out to offset water losses related to exercise. Water is the only essential drink for good hydration, however for activity that last more than 1 hour, energy drinks may provide a real boost.