Just when you think you're tough enough


Eating for Energy

Athletes need proper fuel for their workouts. There are three macro-nutrients: Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fat. Water is not a nutrient, but it is a critical component of an athletes intake.

Proteins  are construction materials for tissue, including muscle. You do not need to eat huge amounts of it. This is a myth. A side of cow, a turkey,  a gallon of milk and a dozen eggs covered with peanut butter are not required to build muscle. Excess protein will make you fat, and put an unnecessary strain on your kidneys.


Carbohydrates are classified as simple or complex. They are strands or three dimensional patterns of sugars, or carbon hexagons, bonded together, and in the case of complex carbs,  combined with cellulose. Cellulose is the indigestible part of plant matter which aids in digestion if it will not dissolve in water, or if it is the type which is water soluble, keeps your arteries clean. Carbs are good for you. Eat a lot of them. Never mind these low-carb diets.

Fats are also not your enemy. The problem is when people eat way too much of the wrong kinds of fat, then hold still. That is a sure way to gain weight. Fat is a concentrated energy source, and when stored in fat cells, it serves important functions- insulation from loss of body heat, cushioning for bones and internal organs, a medium for fat -soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K) and long term energy storage. Fat can be solid at room temperature, which is called saturated fat, which mainly comes from animal sources, and is  unhealthy in large quantities. It clogs arteries like gunk in a drain pipe,  and collects on your waist if your a man, and your hips and thighs if you are a woman. Unsaturated fat is liquid at room temperature , and comes from plant sources. It keeps your arteries clean, and of course, you can gain weight on it, but it is harder to overeat because of all the fiber that comes along for the ride in plant source fats.

Water is a lubricant, coolant, fluid medium for electrolytes, or dissolved blood minerals, and solvent. You need lots of it. When you work out, you lose water from sweat and respiration. You must replace it or your athletic performance will suffer as you become dehydrated, and you could experience heat exhaustion. When you pee, it should be clear. This is a sign of adequate hydration.


Here is a Meal Plan to maximize energy for superior athletic performance. This is based on the presumption of a morning workout, combining cardiovascular and strength training for at least 90 minutes. Feel free to adjust it as necessary for your routine.


Pre-workout meal/Breakfast

8 oz H20, 2 power gels, or one energy bar or small fruit.

Post -workout meal/Lunch

  • 16 oz Iced coffee or tea.
  • 24 oz H20
  • 16 oz electrolyte drink
  • 1 cup fresh fruit
  • 1 cup high fiber cereal, two tbs flax seed oil & honey, and one cup milk.


  • Two cups steamed  veggies, & 16 oz of broiled lean poultry or fish, over brown rice; OR
  • Fresh veggies, (including olives and avocado slices) in a whole grain sandwich with Dijon mustard; OR
  • in a salad with olive oil and vinegar.
  • 2 cups  fresh fruit
  • 16-24 oz H20


2 tbs nuts or seeds
2 cups fruit

Water- at least 2.5 liters a day.



Fuel your workouts properly with fresh, unprocessed or at least minimally processed whole  foods. You will feel the difference when you are properly fueled.  Your muscles will be springier and looser, you will have more energy, and more endurance.

By DA Porter