January 11, 2018
I can talk all day about how exercising makes you feel great. Moving your body, stretching and working your muscles brings out a whole load of benefits. And, thanks to a mixture of endorphins and the sense of achievement, you feel amazing after.
But there’s a lot of conflicting post-workout advice so it’s hard to know what you should and shouldn’t do. Don’t worry though, with the help of my amazing team, I have found out the main ways people are sabotaging themselves after exercising.
1) Rehydrating with sports drinks
There has been a massive hype about how sports drinks before, during and after workouts giving you the energy you supposedly get from them. But these are often full of sugar and far from healthy. The average gym-goer or fitness fanatic does NOT need them.
Sports drinks contain as much as two-thirds the sugar of fizzy drinks – not great.
To calculate how much water (in litres) you need for the day, you multiply your weight in kilograms by 0.03. So, if you weigh 60kg, you should drink around 2 litres a day.
If you are dehydrated you will definitely feel extreme fatigue after exercise which will make it harder to power through your day/evening or even for another workout the next day. So, check the colour of your urine to see if you need to hydrate further. If it’s darker than apple juice, you definitely need to DRINK MORE WATER!
2) Taking supplements for nutrients
Seriously. I’m still surprised why people still take supplements rather than getting their nutrients from actually foods. Although sometimes it is important for people with specific medical conditions, supplements should NEVER replace real food.
This is one of the most common post-workout mistakes that people tend to make. Let me just say it one more time…A synthetically produced vitamin does NOT give you the same nutrients found in real food.
Also, multivitamins don’t make up for an unhealthy diet. Supplements, no matter how effective, can never replace a healthy lifestyle with real food, exercise and good sleep!
3) Choosing low-fat or diet foods
For years now, low-fat foods were considered the key to losing weight. But now, it has been realised that not only is fat essential for keeping you full but low-fat alternatives are often loaded with sugar to improve its taste.
Research has also shown that low-fat products are likely to make you hungrier, so you end up eating even more. Try fresh fruit instead of low-fat or ‘diet’ foods.
4) Overestimating how many calories you’ve burned
Are you one of those people that after a workout you think “right, I’ve done a crazy workout so I deserve maccy D’s”? Haha – we’ve all done it before. But exercising does not magically supercharge your metabolism.
There’s regular research showing that people tend to overestimate the number of calories they burn during exercise. Even though your overall health is improved because of exercise and that it can help you lose weight, it’s not as effective at burning calories as some people think.
It’s key to watch your portion size. Hence why at Results with Lucy we have over 400+ recipes designed to give you all your nutrients but also in moderate portions so you get the full benefit of your workouts.
Following an extremely low-calorie diet isn’t wise though! This can slow down your metabolism and lead to muscle loss. It can also create fatigue and then not being able to push yourself to complete certain workouts.
5) Obsessing over the numbers on the scale
Results with Lucy cannot stress enough to CHUCK YOUR SCALES AWAY. Use a measuring tape instead. Your weight can fluctuate by as much as 2kg over the course of the day. All depending on how much food and liquid you’ve consumed. Plus, for us lucky ladies, hormonal changes can lead to water retention too which affects the number on the scale.
So, whilst you’re trying to lose weight, step off the scales and use our measuring tape instead!
6) Not eating enough protein
Did you know that whilst you’re working your, your muscles are being broken down? So, it’s crucial to consume protein afterwards to rebuild them. Studies have shown that eating protein can help increase muscle mass and strength – plus it keeps you feeling full too.
You need to make sure that you’re getting enough protein when you’re physically active. I would advise being cautious of protein shakes and bars as they may have added ingredients and artificial sweeteners which don’t necessarily nourish your body.
However, it can be a convenient way to refuel on the go but you must be watchful with the nutrition label ad know what to look out for.
7) Skipping a meal
If you do this, you’re making a huge mistake.
You should be eating within 45 minutes of finishing your exercise. How else is your body going to refuel and get the energy it just used up!?
I hope this helps guys. It can be quite difficult to mentally prepare yourself to change your habits especially if you don't know exactly what to eat and what exercises to do.