Running or walking. The best activity to recharge yourself with energy

As we all know, physical activity stimulates the secretion of hormones responsible for a feeling of well-being. They are endorphins. A substance associated with physical pleasure that allows us to feel happiness, joy and even euphoria, also functioning as a natural analgesic, since it reduces the feeling of pain as well as anxiety and stress.

This is why exercise is a means to increase your vitality and your energy since after doing a physical activity or doing something that pleases you a lot like a massage session, the brain produces these natural substances responsible for the sensations of relief, calm and well-being. Therefore, the endorphin level decreases during unpleasant moments such as an argument, a fall or an accident.

From here we invite you to discover your vitality index and thus change or vary everything that prevents you from being a motivated and vital person. And sports will be one of the aspects that will fill your life with energy.

For this, we encourage you to exercise often such as walking or running, two activities that will help you achieve this goal.

If you are starting out in running or going for a long walk every day, we advise you to have this information handy:

  • Both running and walking are two good options for doing a good cardiovascular work and training the heart muscle.
  • Both options charge and recharge you with vitality and greatly enhance the level of mood. Although there are studies that indicate that intense and sustained activities such as running, provides a feeling of psychological well-being , of euphoria, which walking does not.
  • Walking and running promote cerebral blood flow, they help preserve memory, increase intellectual performance and reduce the risk of stroke and Alzheimer’s.
  • People who are looking to lose weight, running or walking will help them with this goal. It is true that running consumes more calories than walking. But brisk walking burns roughly the same number of calories per kilometer, even though it takes longer to reach the same distance.
  • If what we want is a faster and more effective calorie-burning improvement, the race is our activity. The ideal is to run 2 or 3 times a week between 30 and 60 minutes depending on the level we have and the goal we want to achieve.
  • If what we want is to perform a cardiovascular activity and we do not dare to run, walking is also a very beneficial activity that will fill us with vitality.
  • Walking allows us to go out every day of the week between half an hour and an hour and a half since at the joint level it is much less aggressive and it will also lead to an increase in the burning of calories and fat that will allow us little by little to feel better and with much more vitality both at the sports level and in our daily life.
  • An excellent option is the ” cacos” : combining minutes of walking with minutes of running. You can start running 1 minute and walk 3 minutes. You will progressively increase the running time and decrease the walking time. Thus, you will end up running without realizing it.
  • In any of the options you choose, always think that the best decision is to consult an expert who will advise you on the best training plan for you according to your conditions and needs.

Magnesium for athletes

Vitamins and minerals should be part of the diet of any athlete, but it is true that some minerals are more important than others. In this post we want to emphasize the importance of magnesium in runners and athletes in general.

And it is that magnesium is an essential mineral for our organism since it intervenes in a multitude of functions of our metabolism, in the neuromuscular system and in the synthesis of energy and protein. However, despite the fact that it is a basic nutrient for maintaining a healthy life, for some people magnesium remains a great unknown.

What is magnesium for?

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services , magnesium, found naturally in food, is safe and regulates muscle and nervous system function, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure. In addition, it helps build protein, bone mass, and DNA (the genetic material present in cells).

We are talking about a mineral that influences the nervous system, muscle relaxation or the formation of proteins. Its wear and tear and its levels lower than normal can cause the appearance of cramps derived from excessive nervous excitement, joint injuries, too slow muscle recovery and even artery or heart problems.

Therefore, it is a necessary mineral for any human body, but even more so in the case of athletes since they need magnesium and calcium to relax and contract the muscles properly .

What consequences does a magnesium deficiency have in athletes?

There are numerous investigations that support that magnesium deficiency can affect muscle function, one of the most common consequences being the appearance of muscle cramps during exercise . Thus, athletes who do not consume adequate amounts of magnesium are not immune to a chronic inflammatory response. They should be aware of the possible short- and long-term consequences this could have on their health and athletic performance. You can expand this information in the following study by Nielsen FH (1), Lukaski HC. Update on the relationship between magnesium and exercise.

Dietary magnesium deficiency can result in increased energy needs and negatively affect cardiovascular function during submaximal exercise . The lack of magnesium, even a specific deficit, can jeopardize the supply of oxygen and consequently the ability to perform and complete the exercise, reducing sports performance in long-duration exercises.

The aforementioned study reveals the relationship between magnesium and exercise by demonstrating evidence that marginal magnesium deficiency affects exercise performance and amplifies the negative consequences of vigorous exercise (eg oxidative stress).

Intense exercise appears to increase urinary and sweat losses that can increase magnesium requirements by 10-20%. Based on recent dietary surveys and human experiments, a magnesium intake of less than 260 mg / day for men and 220 mg / day for female athletes can result in magnesium deficient status. Therefore, magnesium supplementation or increasing dietary magnesium intake will have beneficial effects on exercise performance.

How do I know if my magnesium level is adequate?

With a test that measures the level of magnesium in the blood, we will find out if there is an abnormal level of magnesium in the blood. To do this, a blood sample will be taken.

The normal range for magnesium level in the blood is 1.7 to 2.2 mg / dL (0.85 to 1.10 mmol / L). The ranges of normal values ​​may vary slightly between different laboratories as they may use different measurements.

According to the US National Library of Medicine, a high magnesium level may indicate:

A low magnesium level may indicate:

Do magnesium supplements improve performance?

The effect of magnesium supplementation on exercise performance remains controversial, however there are many studies that show that magnesium supplementation can improve glucose availability in peripheral and central systems. It can also improve muscle lactate removal and anaerobic alactic metabolism during exercise.

In this study of the European Journal of Applied Physiology The results indicated that the positive effects of magnesium supplementation may contribute to improving exercise performance in athletes. Research showed that magnesium sulfate improved the duration of forced swimming exercise, raised glucose levels, and attenuated lactate levels during forced swimming.
The goal of another study published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health was to test the hypothesis that magnesium supplementation influences the physical performance of volleyball players. It was concluded that magnesium supplementation improved anaerobic actic metabolism, despite the fact that the players were not magnesium deficient.

Therefore and according to the analysis contemplated in these and many more studies, magnesium supplementation should be considered in athletes with magnesium deficiency since low levels can compromise sports performance.

Always keep in mind that through food we obtain the nutrients we need for the proper functioning of the body. Here we share the foods richest in magnesium:

  • Sunflower seeds
  • Caviar
  • Almonds
  • Snails
  • Peanuts
  • Dark chocolate
  • Beans, lentils and chickpeas
  • Walnuts
  • Quino
  • Banana
  • Oats

You lack magnesium when you feel the following symptoms:

To know if you have low magnesium levels, you just have to observe your body:

  • Fatigue.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Headache.
  • Muscle cramps.
  • Weakness.
  • Numbness.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.

In addition, long-term magnesium deficiency can cause hypertension, diabetes, osteoporosis and migraine. So it is important that you detect the lack of magnesium in time.

Be very careful because excessive consumption of coffee, soft drinks, salt and alcohol prevent the correct absorption of magnesium as well as certain nutrients that exert the opposite effect such as oxalic acid that forms non-absorbable complexes.

Does exercise take away hunger?

The satisfaction you feel after doing an exercise routine is perhaps the most immediate benefit an athlete has. The great feeling of well-being that one has after running or doing any training is common to all athletes. Both the endorphins released, as well as the feeling of accomplishment, convince the athlete that they are on the right track. However, many insist that the feeling of hunger after workouts is greater and the calories burned are immediately recovered in front of the refrigerator. Nothing is further from reality.

There are certain exercises, especially those related to aerobic activity, that act by directly influencing the peptide hormone YY, which is responsible for the suppression of appetite. This is the explanation provided by some experts such as Dr. María Amaro, a doctor specializing in Family and Community Medicine, who states that physical exercise combined with diet reduces the anxiety generated by appetite by 60%.

What do the experts say?

Therefore, exercising removes hunger and not only aerobic exercises are those that help reduce appetite in diets. There are other types of exercises, or ‘workouts’, that are performed daily and help eliminate fat in very localized areas such as the abdomen or buttocks.

There is also a new study, conducted by Loughborough University in the UK, which shows that aerobic exercise is better at suppressing appetite than non-aerobic exercise and also provides an explanation as to why this occurs. Experts point out that what happens is that aerobic exercises promote the release of the protein that is involved in human metabolism.

Taking into account the scores of the surveys carried out in the research, it was observed that aerobic exercise produces a greater suppression of appetite. Study author David J. Stensel noted that “hunger is suppressed during and immediately after running or vigorous exercise – data consistent with previous studies indicating that aerobic exercise suppresses appetite.” Specifically, for experts, this leads to the belief that aerobic exercises promote the release of protein, and that it is involved in the mechanisms that regulate appetite.

Recommendations

Squats , which is one of the most complete exercises and serves to tone buttocks, thighs and hips in addition to working joints, bones and ligaments.

The upper and lower abs . The latter are for the abdominal definition phase and the ones that cost the most, while the former are easier to work with and help keep your stomach flat.

Going up and down stairs . A practical exercise that can be done almost anywhere with which you can burn 120 calories. By stopping using the elevator, the objective is already met.

Nutritional balance

According to the world health organization, WHO, eating a healthy diet helps prevent malnutrition in all its forms. The exact composition of a healthy, balanced and varied diet depends on the needs of each person (for example, their age, sex, lifestyle habits, physical exercise) and in this last parameter more is done emphasis when explaining that the nutritional requirements in a person who has physical activity varies with the objective of having a greater performance.

As a consequence, one of the many myths that exist in sports practice is that exercise increases appetite and causes us to eat much more, even more than was spent on exercise.

In any case, it is a fact that exercise is good for everything and everyone. In any case, there is a essential minimum for almost all people . Thus, the World Health Organization recommends in a generic way that every adult (and elderly, as long as their medical limitations do not prevent them) should perform at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic physical exercise weekly or at least 75 minutes of high intensity (or the proportional combination of both).

Likewise, international experts recommend doing strength exercises (such as lifting weights) that involve large muscle groups between one and two times a week. In addition, it seems that higher doses of exercise (300 minutes of moderate exercise or 150 of intense exercise weekly) can have additional benefits on our health.

The less you move, the more tired you will be

Every time we are getting more used to our body to inactivity. We travel by car, take the elevator, television sessions, games or computer and mobile. We are suffering our bodies and closing them to a sedentary lifestyle that can bring fatal consequences.

We have the false conviction that exercising is something very sacrificing and that it leaves you exhausted. Nothing is further from reality!. Playing sports, walking to work, riding a bike, climbing stairs or taking walks with your dog activates the body to give us more energy.

On the other hand, you may think that going two or three times a week to the gym or going out for a run from time to time can calm your conscience and the reality is that it will not help you much if you later you spend all day sitting. It’s about taking every opportunity you can to keep your leather active.

When we move several times a day with these everyday situations, we activate our metabolism many times and this will positively affect our health and reduce the constant feeling of fatigue and laziness that sedentary people have.

What happens to your body when you stop exercising

When we reach a point of inactivity due to a trip, an illness, an injury, a change of life or simply due to laziness, a day may come when you stop doing anything. The less you exercise, the more tired you will be . It is so! And surely you have suffered it in your flesh at some point in your life.

If you finally decide to dedicate your time to other things, this lack of movement will end up taking its toll on your health: loss of muscle mass and loss of strength, as well as capacity to store fat increases.

Keep in mind that from the eighth week of abandoning training, the loss of muscle strength is between 7-12% and muscle glycogen is reduced by 40%.

Many changes

Muscular

Muscle changes are the first to be noticed. Strength is lost and its size decreases, elasticity is shortened and reduces considerably. Elite athletes lose their qualities faster when they stop training than those who do sports or exercise recreationally. The former can begin to lose muscle mass and performance after 4 weeks without training, fans of activity and sports can begin to lose after 6 to 8 weeks of inactivity.

Metabolism

Metabolism slows down. This means that a healthy and balanced diet and the practice of exercise allow to act on the metabolism, which otherwise uses little and, therefore, tends to accumulate energy in the form of fat. By increasing muscle mass, sport forces the metabolism to consume more energy, which is then not stored.

Diseases

Another consequence of not doing sports is a higher risk of suffering from diseases. Why? We do not work our muscles, bones and joints, nor our lung or cardiovascular capacity. One of the most affected by the absence of sport is our bones. Among the health consequences of not doing sports we find a higher risk of suffering from osteoporosis.

Mind

Inactivity adds very little to our minds. When we do physical activity or our favorite sport, the production of endorphins, known as hormones of happiness, increases. These activate in our brain as a positive response, so we reduce stress and feel better about ourselves. A healthy body will help to have a healthy mind, because exercise goes beyond physical work.

Importance of rest as part of training

When we practice sports continuously, we are producing in our body a series of adaptations produced by physical activity itself that will be what make us progress and improve. But training is just as important as raising awareness of the vital importance of rest as an equal or more important part of sports.

When our body performs a physical activity it is undergoing a load and stress produced by this activity (Action), while when it is in the rest period is when the adaptations (Reaction) occur at the physiological level , metabolic and muscular, where all the muscular tissues involved in the activity will be repaired.

Rest as part of training

Numerous studies on rest show that only 30% of the Spanish population admit to sleeping the recommended hours, about 7-9 hours and, what is worse, approximately more than 50% of the The general population has difficulty falling asleep, 32% prefer to have a non-restorative sleep and up to 35% of the population end the day with signs of fatigue and drowsiness.

Therefore, it is undoubtedly important to consider rest as an integral part of training, and that is why we refer to an “active rest”, to consciously underline the intention that it entails, that is, to pay our attention, our energy, in optimal recovery.

Rest is also very important to be able to clear ourselves from our usual sports activity and to be able to disconnect at a psychological level from the sport, thus being able to do activities of all kinds other than the sport itself where you can enjoy other hobbies.

The Spanish Sleep Society (SES) insists on the need for rest by making these recommendations:

  • Incorporate sleep as a “healthy lifestyle” by sleeping the necessary hours according to age (7-9 hours in adults).
  • Strictly respect the Sleep Hygiene Rules to be able to sleep well.
  • Consult with the specialist if the sleep is not perceived as restorative.
  • Maintain a balanced diet and do regular exercise to promote sleep and also our health.
  • Control the environmental conditions for sleep (temperature 18-21º, silence, darkness, adequate mattress).
  • Maintain regular sleep-wake schedules.
  • Avoid self-medication to get more sleep.

Restful sleep

From Personal Running we observe in sport at all levels (from high performance to amateur) that rest is very important since first of all you have to know how to combine both aspects (training + rest / leisure) and thus be able to have an effective sports practice and enjoying what you do.

Remember that adequate restful sleep:

  • Decreases the secretion of cortisol, a stress hormone.
  • Improves our mood and state of mind.
  • Regulates metabolic functions, such as carbohydrate processing and storage.
  • Promotes a correct metabolization of sugar, regulating the levels of leptin and ghrelin, responsible for the feeling of hunger.
  • Studies link restful sleep with a lower rate of cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and risk of heart attacks.
  • It is essential for the consolidation of new learning and cognitive memory processes.

Sports New Year’s resolutions: the key is to choose well

Happy 2020 , family! If you continue with us after all these months, we are 100% sure that part of your resolutions for this new year are closely related to sport . Therefore, and knowing from personal experience the difficulty of maintaining these goals, today we will talk about how to choose well some purposes that motivate us and can be fulfilled without giving up along the way.

Let’s go to give a few very precise keys , although all of them can be summarized in the same idea: the essential thing to achieve the objectives is, to a large extent, the adequacy of the objectives themselves, more than the effort one puts into achieving them. Obviously, this is also vital, but if the choice is correct everything will be much easier.

Choose realistic purposes

Get started The year with the firm intention to establish a sports routine is by no means a guarantee of achieving it. Neither is the fact of joining the gym on January 2, after a morning of shopping in which all the necessary clothing is purchased. “This year yes,” you say to yourself, and that phrase is also useless . But, if all that is useless, is it impossible to fulfill sporting purposes? Of course not.

As in many different areas, the key when reaching a goal is, neither more nor less, its accessibility . We live in a society in which we tend to aspire to the impossible and, although it is a valid strategy to achieve the improbable, it can also translate into frustration if it is not approached correctly. To give an example that comes to the case, we can talk about those people who want to start their sports life by joining the best gym in the city and trying to complete a highly demanding training plan. Most likely, within a few weeks or months, an activity that started with great impetus has been abandoned .

That said, and before moving on to the section in the that we will offer the advice that, from TiendaCulturista , seems more appropriate for your first steps, it seems vital to point out that the choice of objectives is as important -or more- than illusion put in them.

Three key factors

Passion

Fortunately, the sports offer in practically any Spanish city is vast , with very different options that can adapt to all kinds of tastes and personal preferences. In this context, it is easier to find a perfect sports discipline for you , but it also requires a little search that allows you to make an informed choice.

Finding the kind of physical activity that really motivates you is almost always synonymous with success in terms of meeting goals. For this reason, do not propose only “to do more sport this year”, specify the purpose in “to find the sport that I am passionate about and start practicing it”. Think about your main sports references or reflect on the discipline you enjoy the most when you see it on television; two factors that can be very useful when making the right decision.

Patience

Place the patience section right after passion is no accident. One of the problems, perhaps the only one, of starting a sports routine focused on a discipline you love is rushing . Hurry to get closer to the level you’ve been watching on television for a long time, rush to reach a point of perfection where you can enjoy the sport to the fullest; rush, in short, to advance at a faster rate than your body can maintain.

In this also the ability to choose plays a fundamental role, since you must propose short-medium-term goals that are realistic , so that their achievement does not involve overwork or anything like that. Don’t let the desire to improve be what dominates your workouts, because that will surely end badly.

Environment

On many occasions , the sporting purposes are perfectly formulated and, even so, they are not achieved. If something similar has happened to you, you should pay attention to the context surrounding your training, because the problem may be there.

There are people who need company to play sports, others prefer solitude ; some athletes need to feel the fresh air of the street and others are true lovers of gyms . These four distinctions are just the most generic, so you can start thinking about them before delving deeper into your training environment.

By creating a habit that is going to become a part important to your day-to-day life, you need the environment in which it takes place to be comfortable and pleasant, since, although it may not seem like it, it has a very high level of relevance in relation to results and experience.

The benefits of cold training

This week we have proposed to take away the laziness of the first cold and get you out of the house. The cold, the rain and the wind, those weather “demons” that lurk in our heads every time we have the intention of leaving the blanket to activate our body. They are the angels and demons that are around when making the decision.

Well, we have no choice but to recommend that you never open the door to the demons as they will try to pull you and always think that those good angels watch over your health so that the cold does not get in the way of exercising.

And science is on the side of the good guys. Research tells us that running in the cold is not only not bad for you, it is also beneficial. Running or practicing any sport outdoors when it is very cold has many more benefits than you thought : physical capacity, endurance and muscle strength are improved and, in addition, more calories are burned . Do you need any more reasons to slam the demons down?

We share both the benefits and the precautions to take to train with shivering thermometers.

Running with cold makes you lose more

Do you know what we have always thought that you burn more calories the hotter it is and that you lose more weight? Well, this is not only not true but quite the opposite since sweating more does not equal burning more fat . In other words, when the thermometer goes down, our body consumes more calories, precisely to compensate for this thermal drop. According to experts, there is strong evidence that exercise and cold activate a “good” type of fat that burns calories.

According to Carolina Pérez, a nutrition specialist from the Quirónsalud Hospitals Obesity Unit, “when the thermometer marks 25ºC to 30ºC ambient temperature, our body does not need to consume energy. But when it drops, the body tends to produce “brown adipose” tissue, good fat that burns energy and glucose and produces the heat necessary to maintain body heat.

It must be taken into account that half of the calories we eat are aimed at maintaining body temperature: in this way, if it is cold in the environment, we need to generate more calories. Therefore, when you lower the thermometer, the body starts a whole series of processes to counteract it, which can cost up to 30% of the total energy budget of the body. And the more fat we dedicate to it, less likely we are to suffer from diabetes, overweight or obesity.

Thus, low temperatures “activate” the consumption of fats that help you lose weight.

How do you fit? Well, there are more benefits and reasons for you to put on your shoes and go out to train below zero.

With little danger of dehydration

Logically, in winter and with cold temperatures the body needs fewer resources to stay hydrated. Thus, the risks of having dehydration are greatly reduced if, for example, we are running. However, remember to always be well hydrated in winter. The extra effort generates a significant loss of water that must be compensated to avoid the onset of fatigue and reduced performance.

It strengthens the immune system

An article published in Journal of Applied Physiology found that exposure to cold under the effects of exercise increases the number of leukocytes and granulocytes, responsible for the functioning of the immune system. It is a fact that outdoor training improves our immune system and even more, some research carried out, such as that of the Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, suggests that training in a cold environment can reduce the possibility of suffering from the flu. up to 30%.

Precautions for doing sports in the cold

Despite all the benefits that we have told you about when exercising in low temperatures, we also have to take certain precautions into account:

  • The warming should be more exhaustive on these dates. With cold, muscles and tendons contract and we have a greater risk of injury if we have not previously worked on them.
  • If you can, practice sports at noon , that is, when the temperature is milder. Also take into account factors such as the wind so that if you go running, start facing the wind, so the thermal sensation when you return with fatigue and sweat will be softer.
  • In this link we give you the keys to the clothing necessary to run in the natural environment when the weather conditions are adverse. At this time the so-called “three-layer theory” comes into play, the main objective of this theory is to keep the body dry, avoiding both sweat condensation and humidity from rain or snow, while ensuring the maintenance of body temperature and insulation from cold and wind.

The benefits of training with cold

  • Although it is cold, we are doing the same exercise as in summer and it is necessary to hydrate the body before, during and after. We have already commented that it may seem that we are not trying hard because sweating is different but do not be fooled.
  • Of course, when you get home, relax with a good hot shower and restorative.
  • In short, running in the cold should not scare anyone, it is even a beautiful way to see and enjoy different landscapes if, above all, the surroundings are covered with snow.

Exercise and sport to help improve our energy and physical condition

In this post we point out some aspects to take into account about physical activity and energy that can help improve physical performance. Sport, together with a correct diet, allows you to face any daily activity with vitality and without fatigue.

1. Physical activity can influence energy metabolism. A body used to physical exercise makes better use of oxygen and nutrients, which makes it easier to obtain and use energy. So it is important to start the day with energy; physical exercise is the best alarm clock for the cells to activate. They receive a healthy shower of endorphins that will make us feel more vital each morning.

2. It is proven that outdoor sport helps us feel better. Some studies indicate that moderate outdoor exercise is enough to boost self-esteem and feel good. And is that doing sports releases endorphins , that substance known as the hormones of happiness.

3. Our muscles need exercise, especially in these times when we spend eight hours sitting in front of the computer. We don’t want to be alarmist, but according to the WHO, physical inactivity costs € 48,438 million in direct health care. Lack of movement is a passport to suffer from diseases such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes or breast or colon cancer, the origin of 71% of all deaths in the world, including that of 15 million people each year between the ages of 30 and 70. Therefore, doing some type of training will help us improve our energy and avoid irreparable consequences on our health.

4. Obviously, the energy required to perform physical exercise will depend on the type of sport that is performed. That is why it is important to have the help of a professional who knows perfectly how to adapt a training plan according to objectives and needs. In any case, what we do, if it is regular and adapted to progress, will be beneficial for health and vitality. It is necessary to choose a sport that we like and, always, with gradual challenges.

Ejercicio y deporte para ayudar a mejorar nuestra energía y condición física

5. Behaviors that represent a danger to the preservation of health are considered risk factors. Two of the main ones, with the greatest negative influence on chronic pathologies, are sedentary lifestyle and inadequate nutrition . Any physical activity involves an energy expenditure for our body, and each sport practice requires a specific energy intake depending on the type, intensity and duration of the exercise.

6. When doing sports we must increase the consumption of foods rich in carbohydrates –rice, corn, flaked cereals, cookies, bread, pasta, potatoes, legumes – from the usual 55% to 70% of the total diet, since when the reserves are exhausted, the dreaded ‘pájara’ appears. Regarding proteins, it is not necessary to ingest extra amounts, and regarding fats, we will slightly decrease their percentage in the diet.

Physically active people enjoy a higher quality of life. It should also be remembered that a good rest and a good diet contribute to improving physical performance. Therefore, incorporating healthy habits on a daily basis will provide well-being and help maintain our health and vitality.

We invite you to discover your vitality index on the Espacio Vitalidad website, where you will find more tips to improve your vitality. You know: physical exercise will be one of the aspects that will fill your life with energy.

Diet to prepare a marathon

The Marathon is the athletic event par excellence, of great demand and long distance, with a total distance of 42 km and 195 meters and today it enjoys great popularity in all the world. It is, along with other sports such as cycling or triathlon, one of those with the greatest physical wear . In addition to complying with a training session plan, it is necessary to carry out a diet that can provide you with all the energy you need to face so much effort.

Nutritional aspects to take into account in training

It is necessary to have a varied and balanced diet. This means a correct daily intake of energy and fluids, both in quality and quantity, always adapted and personalized to the characteristics of each athlete.

Training is where you can best experiment with new foods and nutritional strategies. It will be the way to check if it adapts well or not with your system. Do not start experimenting 3-4 weeks before the race as you can condition the race.

The basic nutritional needs for a runner are:

Carbohydrates

We are talking about cereals, rice, legumes, bread, pasta, potatoes … that is, the main source of energy for our muscular system during any physical resistance exercise. Without enough carbohydrates, a runner will have a hard time finding the energy to finish a race and your body will begin to burn other sources of energy, that is, proteins, that your body needs for other functions.

Hydration strategy

A good hydration strategy is essential. Make a correct hydration before, during and after training, with water or isotonic drinks if the training lasts more than 90 minutes. Being well hydrated will help the runner perform well and better tolerate fluid intake during the marathon.

The experts insist on drinking water before, during and after any sporting practice , and even more so if it is a marathon, where they can be eliminated through sweat , several liters of water.

Keep in mind that if hydration fails, dehydration occurs and a marathon requires intense effort, leading to involuntary dehydration. For this reason it is very important to keep the body hydrated before, during and after exercise.

Proteins

They are essential in building muscle that has been damaged during the long kilometers of training. It is vital for recovery , since during exercise it plays a fundamental role in the structure and well-being of the muscles.

Most runners need to ingest a range of 1.2-1.8 grams of protein per kilo of body weight, and those runners training for a marathon should aim for the upper part of that range. The best sources of protein are shellfish, low-fat poultry rasa (chicken, turkey), legumes, lower-fat cuts of beef and pork, eggs, and dairy low in fat.

Muscles are made up of proteins , but these are lost during exercise, so it is important to take both before and after exercise.

Fat

Depending on the intensity of the training, the predominant energy source will vary; slow and relaxed rhythms, our body tends to use a greater amount of fat as fuel, while at fast rates , our body uses a greater amount of carbohydrates carbon (through glycogen stored in muscles, liver and circulating blood).

So, fats are the main source of fuel for moderate / long-duration, low-to-moderate intensity physical activity. However, fats are also important during high intensity exercise as is necessary to help access stored carbohydrate (glycogen).

Vitamin C and E

Vitamin C is an important vitamin for marathon runners. What interests us most is its role as an antioxidant, that is, it helps protect from the presence of free radicals and consequently reduces cellular damage from long-term exercise. Vitamin E is another antioxidant that helps protect from the presence of free radicals, which are substances that can cause cell damage as a result of physical exercise.

Fiber

Helps to normalize bowel function and can help lower blood cholesterol levels. Marathon runners are normally advised to reduce the amount of fiber before running to prevent intestinal problems, although it depends on each individual case.

Aspects of the diet for competition

Based on the nutritional guidelines developed during the training phase and the experience gained, the athlete will already have an adequate dietary strategy for the race. As we have already discussed, experimenting with new foods is not recommended and strategies on race day to prevent stomach (intestinal) problems and therefore performance.

Sometimes the nerves before the race take away hours of sleep. It is recommended to avoid stimulating or alcoholic beverages as well as large or high-fat meals the afternoon / night before the race.

Breakfast should be made about 3 hours before starting the test, it should contain between 100 and 300 g of carbohydrates , and it should be made up of foods with low fat content and fiber, in addition to avoiding foods that can cause flatulence, irritants or spicy.

These are some of the most important general nutritional guidelines for running a marathon. However, a completely individualized nutritional strategy will be key to achieving your sports goal in the best conditions.

Allergies in athletes

These days time invites many to go out to practice sports. With early spring and high temperatures, flowering increases and with it allergies. Many are already sneezing, watery eyes, runny nose, and respiratory tract irritation.

In the 80s, pollen allergy was concentrated in the months of May, June and July. However, the trend of the last 30 years to suffer from increasingly warmer winters has generated what allergists call multi-seasonal pollinosis and allergies, increasingly, begin in February due to earlier flowering processes .

For those who suffer from any type of allergy, going out to play sports during certain dates can be a real ordeal. So we share these recommendations that will help you alleviate the rigors of spring and continue enjoying outdoor sports.

Identify the symptoms

Allergies imply a specific symptomatology that, in this case, runners or people who practice any sport in the open air, must know perfectly to avoid greater evils. We refer to symptoms such as conjunctivitis (itchy and stinging eyes, watery eyes and swelling), rhinitis (inflammation of the nasal or throat mucosa, sneezing, mucus and itching) and asthma (narrowing of the bronchial tubes, inflammation and difficulty breathing). These would be the clearest and it is essential to identify them.

Each type of plant produces different types of allergens, but which is the one that affects you? It is advisable to go to see the allergist to make a diagnosis, tell you what medication to take and what kind of environments to avoid when doing sports. Nowadays, many doctors recommend starting medication before symptoms start once the season approaches.

Choose the days well

Of course, before going out to practice your sports activity it is important to know the weather situation that will present itself to you that day. Choose well which day you go out to do sports. The windy and sunny days are the worst , because the plants have produced more pollen and the wind carries it. On the other hand, the moments after a shower are perfect for a pollen because the atmosphere is clean.

Choose the hours well

The first hours of the morning (5 to 10 h) and the last hours of the afternoon and night (19 to 24 h), are those that usually register the highest pollen concentrations. There are days when maybe a sudden change in the wind or rain helps to clean the air, but in general, if you practice sports between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., it is quite likely that you suffer less from allergies .

Did you know that pollen can travel up to 600 kilometers driven by the wind? However, if there is a lot of humidity or even fog, it slows down and travels little. Therefore, one of the best times to play sports is after it rains or when there is fog. On the eltiempo.es website or app you can check the pollen concentrations in the environment. It is important to know which places have the highest concentrations.

Choose well where

The city, contrary to popular belief, is a worse place for pollution and diesel particulates. And it is that in these elements there are some components that can multiply by 27 the allergenicity. Therefore, you should avoid places near highways and industrial centers , where the atmosphere is hotter and symptoms are worse.

Also in open fields there are no buildings to stop pollen grains , and the allergy sufferer is exposed. Do you know a perfect place to do sports and that allergy does not bother you? The beach. There is no pollen by the sea and the humidity is beneficial. This means that many professional teams train by the sea in spring. However, do not suffer … because if you heed these recommendations, you will not have problems.

Hydrate to the maximum

During periods of allergy, the body often loses more fluid through tears and a runny nose. You also lose it by sweating, and that is why drinking a couple of liters a day is not worth drinking but at least 3 . You’ll notice the added hydration to remove mucus more efficiently, while reducing irritation to the airways. If you don’t drink, your brats dry up , more so than a person who doesn’t have any pathology. You also have a very good solution: The one recommended by the WHO: five pieces of fruit a day and two liters of water.

Another method to regenerate is to relieve nasal congestion with solutions of seawater with hyaluronic acid so that it can be used in a sustained way. Sea water is a great natural regenerator.

The importance of the breath

You have seen athletes wearing masks often. They are widely used by cyclists and must always incorporate approved filters and an exhalation valve. Always warm up properly before starting your activity and breathe through your nose, because that is where we have a truly effective natural filter. Twenty minutes of warm-up is essential, always favoring nasal breathing.

Shower and wash your clothes

It’s the only way allergies don’t haunt you. Get rid of the allergens impregnated in your hair and clothes, otherwise they will accompany you wherever you go.

All these recommendations will not make your allergy disappear, but they will help you reduce its symptoms and allow you to continue practicing outdoor sports. Even suffering from an allergic disease such as asthma should not represent a barrier to playing sports. Some famous athletes and elite athletes suffer from asthma without this having prevented them from practicing highly competitive sports. However, it is important to take proper control by your doctor and personal trainer.