It’s the same for many gymrats, our diet can often be the weak link in our training regime. Without direct access to nutritionists and dieticians, we have to do our own research. This can see us taking recommendations from internet “experts” and reaping the wisdom of potbelly, singlet-wearing dudes down the gym.
This reliance on broscience can often leave us with thin pockets and a fat ass. We avoid carbs like the office Christmas party hook-up, eat more protein than a starving lion in a chicken farm and spend the equivalent of a third world country’s budget on supplements. Still, our look screams hot wings instead of hot body.
Let’s be honest, we’re not crushing it in the gym because we hate our bodies; we’re there to become beasts better. While performance is always key, no one wants to look like they don’t train, or worse still, like a cardio bunny. We need to understand how to eat to maximize muscle growth while keeping fat in check. It’s the only way to look like beasts when we’re naked. Sexy, naked beasts!
Understanding Carbs and How They Affect Us
Not all carbohydrates are equal, some are tasty and the rest are good for us. Simple carbs tend to be the ones we have on our cheat day and include sugar, cakes, cereal, cookies, pizza, white bread, beer and wine. Complex carbs are the ones we know and associate with healthy eating like brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, beans and lentils. Most vegetables, legumes and whole grains fall into the fibrous camp.
When eaten, simple and complex carbs break down into sugar—namely glucose—and this rise of sugars in our blood triggers the release of insulin. Insulin signals to our cells to either take glucose from our blood for energy or to store, as fat. The more simple carbs we eat on a daily basis, the more insulin we need to produce to control blood sugar levels. This leads to becoming desensitized to insulin, weight gain and problems with fat loss.
Within bodybuilding however, insulin is highly regarded for muscle growth. Inside muscle fibers are insulin receptors. When insulin reaches these receptors it signals to the muscle cells to open up which allows such as amino acids, creatine and glucose to enter and increases muscle growth.
Insulin sensitivity is the foreplay of eating for muscle growth and fat loss. Most people (men) don’t understand it, you think you can do without it, but… if you do it, it will make your life ah-mazing! So here are the best ways to manipulate your insulin levels and eat your way to swolecity!