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The Importance of Nutrition to Your Overall Health and Fitness Goals

This week’s blog post is from one of our favorite nutrition and fitness coaches, Amy Peters, owner of Shape of Strength. Amy is passionate about helping moms feel like themselves again through fitness and nutrition. Read on for more about the importance of nutrition to you health and fitness goals.

Who doesn’t want to look and feel their best?  With all of life’s demands – it’s important to make sure you’re fueling your body properly to be at the top of your game – no matter what.  That could be in your career, your relationships, your finances or your physical and mental health.  Much of the success in any area of your life starts with how you nourish your body.

Here’s what you need to know…

You can’t out-exercise a poor diet

When it comes to maintaining a healthy weight, many people think exercise is the key.  Oftentimes when I talk with people they contribute their weight gain to a lack of activity.  However, research shows that about 80% of fat loss results are due to nutrition.

What’s behind this?  If you’ve ever worked out you may have experienced that you can burn a few hundred to several hundred calories.  Let’s take into account how many calories are in a meal or in a particular food.  Most meals are a few hundred to several hundred calories.

So, if it takes you an hour to burn what you can consume in 15 minutes – think about how much easier it is to eat calories vs. expend them through exercise.  You could see how easily extra calories could add up and how hard it would be to burn them off with exercise.

You can’t count on exercise to outrun your diet for other reasons as well.  For one – your body can’t withstand long-term intense bouts of exercise.  At some point your body needs to rest and recover.  Also, most of us have lots going on in a day.  Coming up with the time required to out-exercise your calories would be unrealistic.

The quality of your fuel is important

When you think about how you fuel a gas powered car – how would you gas-up a Ferrari vs. a Hyundai?  A Ferrari requires premium fuel.  A Hyundai requires regular gasoline.  The difference is a Ferrari is a performance driven vehicle that requires high octane gas to run like the supercar that it is.

Similar to a Ferrari – humans are performance driven machines that function better when they have the proper fuel.  Junk food, sugar, and alcohol are terrible sources of fuel.  A little terrible fuel won’t affect health or performance much.

You can get by on small doses of junk food before it affects your overall health and performance at the gym.  But, when you use poor fuel too often – it’s impossible to overcome the negative effects.

Even too much healthy food is too much

I was talking with someone today who shared that she eats a lot of vegetables, but hardly any protein.  She also told me she’s been gaining weight and noticed how weak she is.  Most people I work with struggle to eat enough vegetables – so she has one great advantage!

However, unless you’re eating the right foods with the right balance in the correct amounts – you won’t maintain a healthy weight or build muscle.  We always hear the phrase “eat in moderation”, and when it comes to nutrition – that’s sound advice!

While there are numerous “diets” and food philosophies out there – no matter what, if you consume more calories than your body needs you will gain weight.

There’s no doubt that exercise has an important role in physical fitness and health.  However, if your nutrition is not on point – your health and your physical performance will suffer.

If you have questions for Amy or would like help with improving your nutrition and fitness – feel free to reach out to Amy at [email protected] and check out Amy’s website.