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Christopher J Hull 05-13-2011 08:35 AM

Eating plan for day-long "strength" "workouts"
This is my first post and its kinda long so be gentle with me please.

My question revolves around the best way to plan my nutrition for a day if I am going to be doing short strength-related exercising throughout the day. I am an avid rock climber and I will be on a rock climbing trip for the next month. During the typical day I will do about 4 or 5 climbs. Each climb lasts about 20 minutes and is more or less an intense full-body workout that puts a lot of stress on nearly all the muscles (as well as joints, tendons, etc.)

A real quick background on my personal nutritional history. Up until about 4 months ago I was a vegetarian for about 6 years. I had a number of reasons, but one of them being that I fully believed I was eating a healthy diet. I got turned on to the idea of paleo, was overwhelmed with the science, research, and arguments I came across, and have been trying to implement this way of eating ever since. So this entire method of eating is still very new to me.

So here I am now. Trying to figure out the best way to plan my meals to optimize both health and performance on the rock. I would assume that what I am asking about would also apply to someone at a wrestling tournament and possibly other forms of combat sports and/or weight-lifting events. I read The Paleo Diet for Athletes and while I learned a lot from the book it is really based more towards endurance activites and doesn't apply directly towards what I am looking for.

My current idea is: eat a breakfast with about 4oz of meat, some avocado, spinach and broccoli with a piece of fruit on the side. At the end of my entire day of climbing I usually drink a protein shake then have a paleo dinner about an hour or so later when I am back at camp. But what about during the day when I'm climbing? Part of me was thinking about making a pretty big paleo meal (~8oz of meat with a bunch of steamed veggies) and eating that throughout the day right after each climb with a piece of fruit and some nuts here and there. Would this be correct? Or should I just snack a little after each climb and try to have a normal "lunch" in the middle of the day? Should I be eating certain "kinds" of fruits throughout the day? I guess I am looking for something that will help my body recover from each climb AND keep my body ready to do multiple climbs throughout the day (usually about 45-60 minutes apart.)

Any help is GREATLY appreciated.

Katherine Derbyshire 05-13-2011 09:03 AM

Re: Eating plan for day-long "strength" "workouts"
You'll probably need more carbs, and certainly more total calories, than you would on a less strenuous day. If it's hot and/or at altitude, be sure to replenish fluids and electrolytes, too.

Provided you get enough food over the course of the day, I don't think timing matters that much. So I'd suggest snacking as needed, but make sure you get a good solid lunch, too. If you're responsible for your own food, carry more than you think you'll need.


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