Monday, May 31, 2010

Glycogen and Fitness--Part One

I had gotten a conversation about the importance of Glycogen and Fitness with a good friend of mine, Robin Powell. Robin owns P3 Fitness in Anderson, SC and I  had always intended on finishing this article and finally getting life on an even keel and have the opportunity to talk about something that should be very important to all of us.

Robin pumping it out at P3 Fitness

Technical Definitions for the Glycogen Articles

Before I get into the CheffyBabbles I thought it would be a good to give technical definitions to some of the phrases/words that we are going to discuss in this set of articles. These may not make sense now, but hopefully when this series of articles is complete you will. If this is of special interest to you I would recommend you print this page out for reference.

Glycemic Index- ratings of the effect on glucose based on the carbs upon food ingestion (GI). The lower the GI ranking, the lesser the effect on the glycemic effect.

Glycemic Effect- how food raises blood glucose and elicits insulin

Insulin-a hormone excreted in response to high blood glucose.

Glycogen-is made and stored in the liver and our muscles as a form of glucose. Found in animals in only a limited amount and not present in plants at all. We store most of our glucose in our liver and muscles and is released when our blood glucose falls (like in between meals or when working out)

Glucose-Blood sugar/energy. A monosaccharide; the root for disaccharides and polysaccharides. Our bodies primary energy source.

Lactate- During intense activity muscles excrete lactate into our bloodstream which is then filtered by our liver and in turn released as glycogen.

VO2 max- VO2 max refers to the maximum volume of oxygen consumed.

Physical activity benefits the body's nutrition by helping regulate the use of fuels, pushes the body compostion more towards lean, and helps us increase our daily kcalorie allowance. Physical Fitness and weight training helps us to manage or prevent several chronic diseases, enhances our physical and psychological well being, improves posture, strengthens our back and helps us maintain and maximize our bone mass.

So what's not to like????

Physical activity lowers your blood pressure, slows your pulse rate & raises your "good" cholesterol levels. The math really isn't that hard to do...

It saddens me to think that approximately 25% of adults in the US are completely inactive or sedentary if you will...pretty pathetic statistic...
People that know me know that I am and have always been a little guy, and when offering dietary advice some people kind of frown on the skinny kid that won't ever have to worry about being fat giving dietary consultation. The fact is that I won't ever have to worry about being unhealthy either. Not because I am a little guy but because I live my life, although not seriously active, I am active.
I take my walks everyday, attempt to do my Tai Chi at least once a week, ride my bike around 30 miles a week, spend more time on my feet than I do on my butt, etc. It really isn't about the intensity of your exercise, it is the point that you are getting your exercise, burning calories, eating right and enjoying life. When you exercise not only do you feel better about yourself and those around you, but you look better, your behaviors are more positive and people notice you for that "positive you"...It's a win-win situation. The Dietary Guidlines for Americans 2005 states that we need to spend a minimum of 30 mins out of our day in some form of physical activity.
When you exercise your option of being more active you allow yourself to become more flexible, build up your cardiovasular system and muscle strength to allow you the endurance to face the needs of day to day life with more energy to spare. Again, what's not to like???
Anyway, my point to this little preface before I get into the CheffyBabbles is just to ask everyone to stop for 30 minutes out of your day for you...go for a walk, work in the yard, take your kids on a bike ride, not only will you feel better about you but your world will become a much happier place to be...

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