This is going to sound like a stupid question. Doing some reading on how you want to load up on carbs and fuel exercise. But from a evolution of standpoint this doesn't make much sense to me.
I mean say that you where running in the savanna to capture prey only to find out that it's a pot of steaming sweet potatoes on four legs running away from you.Like in a novel from Terry Pratchett.Don't get me wrong I understand that you need some carbohydrates to fuel your exercise.And I know the women of the tribe would pick plants and would make a carbohydrate meals for the tribe.But why only do a study showing that carbohydrates improve performance surely if you had all your test subjects there would test a variety of food sources like fat. I mean in the studies that show that the carbohydrates have a reward system set up so your body keeps on performing because it thinks is getting food. But surely fat would have a greater award system response. Is this just because they only tested carbohydrates because the funding came from a huge carbohydrate company. Anyway is anyone here a long distance athletes and found that using coconut oil instead of a carbohydrate packets has increased your performance?
asked bymatthew_5 (289)
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on December 07, 2012
at 08:30 PM
I think some of this depends on the type of exercise you're doing. I have heard that steady state cardio, like distance running, works fairly well for those of us who are low carbers. We usually don't "bonk" and hit a wall when our body runs out of carbohydrate fuel. On the other hand, exercises with intense bursts of energy may have a different effect, but I've heard this mentioned more for athletics and not exercise.
For instance, if you're a football player, you might need a larger supply of glycogen in your muscles to give you an extra amount of quick energy. This doesn't mean that you should eat a loaf of bread before a game, but more like get some starchy tubers in you a day or two before to make sure that you've got emergency reserves.
Personally, when I exercise, I do so fasted and I do HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), which is similar to athletic bursts of energy. The only difference is that I don't have a need to win anything. If I've had a quick burst of expending energy, I have the time to recover before trying it again. My goal is health and fat loss, not winning anything, so the needs are different.
A lot of weighlifters and exercisers say to eat before exercising so you'll have fuel to get through your exercises. If your goal is to work on muscles, this might be true, but if you're trying to burn through fat, you've got to run through the food you just ate. I've never found myself for a loss of energy to complete my strength training and HIIT routine on an empty stomach. I just ignore those who think you need to fuel up ahead of time. It's also cool to see people next to me swilling down energy drinks and stopping before I'm done.
P.S. That's a good question you asked, not a dumb one.