INFRARED SPORTSWEAR POWERED BY PROGRESS

Nutrition for Strength

Time to Read

7 minutes

Points of Interest

  • Balancing protein, fat and carbs
  • Types of muscle fibres
  • Muscle confusion
  • Push hard
  • Rest and Recover

Do you want to find out the truth about muscle growth and strength in women?

We know that a healthy diet should contain a balance of protein, fats and carbs but getting the right balance can be tricky and stressful.

In this blog, we discover how much of the right foods we should be eating, for optimal muscle strength and body power.

Protein

Protein is a key factor in muscle growth. Essential amino acids form the building blocks of protein, which in turn builds and maintains muscle mass. Consuming enough protein after workouts ensures that the muscles can repair and build.

Yet most of these essential amino acids can neither be produced, or stored, by the human body. Instead, they must be consumed every day in order to create the right environment for a strong and healthy body.

Foods such as meat, dairy, soy and buckwheat are rich in essential amino acids. Rice and legumes contain some, but not all essential amino acids, so must be part of a varied consumption program.  

Protein also helps you feel fuller for longer which helps with weight regulation by keeping excess, unwanted fat down.

Whether you are a carnivore, vegetarian or vegan it is possible to consume all of the amino-acids to build strong muscle. There are many successful vegan athletes and body-builders, although once thought impossible (a relatively new topic still to be observed). It requires a varied diet, carefully considering the constitution of your daily intake.

We know that protein should be consumed straight after a workout to help muscle fibres repair and grow, and to get the best out of a workout. It can be found in many foods such as eggs, poultry, quinoa or almonds.

If you are in a rush, a protein shake will suffice. Either whey or vegan options are good to consume. Vegan variations are often made up of proteins such as pea, pumpkin and sunflower to form the complete amino acid profile.

Natural fat for muscle

To take training to the next level it is useful to understand just how beneficial fat is to build muscle.

Fat burns slower than other fuels when used by the body, so provides a more long-term resource of energy to keep training for longer, which contributes to good health overall.

Healthy fats are transporters of rich vitamins and minerals (micro-nutrients). The macro-nutrient, that is fat, helps transport these essential nutrients to the cells to keep the body functioning optimally.

Testosterone is another essential hormone which we consume it in the form of ‘healthy fat’ also known as HDL cholesterol. Testosterone is a collaborator in the production of amino acids, required for creating new muscle mass as explained at the start of this article.

HDL cholesterol can be found in food such as olive oil, avocado, nuts and wild fish.

There are a few vitamins that are needed by women especially, when training. Zinc, magnesium, vitamin B6 and vitamin D provide huge benefits when training. Vitamin B6 is also great for the immune system which, under even moderate training strain, can deplete quickly.

These nutrients can boost Testosterone-enhanced muscle production which may be necessary, discussed previously, as women produce less Testosterone than men.

It is important to seek medical advice, as you may be lacking in some or all of these. Furthermore, if you are on a specific or personal diet then ensure that these nutrients are optimal within your food plan.

These nutrients also help the mind focus which, as discussed earlier, is a contributing factor to output.

Testosterone, the key hormone involved in muscle growth, is produced at optimal levels when the diet is neither too high in protein, nor too low in fat consumption. A study of the best diet balance for lean muscle mass production and maintenance finds the optimal levels include 15-20% healthy fats, 25-30% protein and 55-60% carbohydrates. This level of fat consumption can maintain testosterone levels without the associated increased risk of coronary heart disease. So, whilst protein helps form muscle, it is essential to recognise other key nutrients involved, to reap the rewards on a higher spectrum.

Healthy fats are transporters of rich vitamins and minerals (micro-nutrients).

The macro-nutrient, that is fat, helps transport these essential nutrients to the cells to keep the body functioning optimally.

 

Testosterone is another essential hormone which we consume it in the form of ‘healthy fat’ also known as HDL cholesterol. Testosterone is a collaborator in the production of amino acids, required for creating new muscle mass as explained at the start of this article.

HDL cholesterol can be found in food such as olive oil, avocado, nuts and wild fish.

There are a few vitamins that are needed by women especially, when training. Zinc, magnesium, vitamin B6 and vitamin D provide huge benefits when training. Vitamin B6 is also great for the immune system which, under even moderate training strain, can deplete quickly.

These nutrients can boost Testosterone-enhanced muscle production which may be necessary, discussed previously, as women produce less Testosterone than men.

It is important to seek medical advice, as you may be lacking in some or all of these. Furthermore, if you are on a specific or personal diet then ensure that these nutrients are optimal within your food plan.

These nutrients also help the mind focus which, as discussed earlier, is a contributing factor to output.

Testosterone, the key hormone involved in muscle growth, is produced at optimal levels when the diet is neither too high in protein, nor too low in fat consumption. A study of the best diet balance for lean muscle mass production and maintenance finds the optimal levels include 15-20% healthy fats, 25-30% protein and 55-60% carbohydrates. This level of fat consumption can maintain testosterone levels without the associated increased risk of coronary heart disease. So, whilst protein helps form muscle, it is essential to recognise other key nutrients involved, to reap the rewards on a higher spectrum.

Carbohydrates

On the topic of macro-nutrients for muscle growth, carbs, whilst not a muscle builder, are a source of energy. There is much debate over carbs for energy, rather than being in a state of ketosis observing a protein only diet.

It is generally understood that women need carbohydrates. Significantly healthy, fibre rich sources include fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains. Consumption of this food group helps restore energy glucose levels. In addition, fibre flushes out unwanted fats through the digestive system.

Carbs are beneficial, in the long-term, for the brain (another debate about a ketosis, protein only, diet). Carbs increase energy by supplying glycogen as fuel. Whereas ketosis can leave one energy-less and unable to excel. Another topic of debate. Food for thought?!

Types of muscle fibres

In a previous blog we debunked the myth that lifting weights make females look manly. To gain more muscle and a toned physique, it is important to understand the different types of muscle fibre.

Weights will certainly tone and build muscle but in order to improve the physicality and overall strength, different types of sport should be practised. This is to challenge and shock the muscle to produce new muscle fibres and added strength.

High intensity interval training otherwise known as HIIT targets the fast twitch muscle fibres. This increases testosterone levels which also keeps unwanted fat gain down.

Muscle Confusion

For muscle breakdown and growth, muscles must be put through significant force and stress. This is done through varied states or exercise regimes the body has to endure. Changing up the exercise routine, keeping the body switching between different types of exercise, will help build muscle fibre. This is known as hypertrophy, pertaining to the enlargement of an organ or tissue, due to the increase in the size of its cells.

 

If you are lifting weights or doing body weight exercises the only way to build muscle is to push harder, lift heavier or do more reps.

Sticking to the same heavy weight every single time is not going to produce results, even though you are fatiguing.

Variety is the key.

 

When looking around most gyms, many people are doing the same thing, such as lifting weights, week in week out. Yes, they look fit and pumped, but imagine if they were to mix up their training for an all encompassing effect on mind body and spirit.

Some of the most honed bodies incorporate different practices such as pilates, boxing and functional moves to encourage the muscles to work and act differently.

This is also known as muscle confusion. Muscle confusion is exactly that. It’s when the muscle (actually the mind) is confused by performing new, unexpected movements, forcing it to work differently. Hence, triggering a different response and muscle reaction.

Push harder

Pushing oneself within the chosen activity is another accelerator for muscle growth. For example, doing more reps, faster or slower reps and with more precision. However, adding more variety, creativity and depth to the exercise will provide more possibility for growth.

Recovery for strength

Many believe training every day is how you produce muscle. This is not necessarily the case. Daily practice will help you improve your precision, technique and ability in many ways. But in order to maintain a healthy body and allow muscles to grow well, strategically resting the muscles in between sessions will produce much better results.

Resting has a lot to answer for. It is absolutely essential to have proper rest days or even weeks occasionally, to fully maximise the body’s potential.

Rest may feel lazy, but the science behind the muscle speaks volumes about resting for proper recovery. It is possibly one of the most important factors in muscle growth, as it is during the rest phase that the muscle can repair and grow stronger.

Leading the way in women’s strength and fitness

Worldwide and inter-state competitions for females are becoming ever popular.

The rise of the female body builder and physique categories demonstrate the strength of the female body.

As more research provides us with greater knowledge our understanding of the female anatomy evolves.  

With regards to training, developments lead the pathway for best practice amongst female athletes… the possibilities are endless!

Over to you...

All women are different. Some will build more muscle through hormones and natural body composition, while others through food and mindset.

Understanding one’s own body through analysis will set you in the right direction.

Factors to note include the monthly cycle, recording physical output and performance during exercise sessions, and diversifying training methods and styles.

Also important is looking at personal gains through food types, evaluating nutrients consumed, acknowledging rest periods and including relaxation and sleep.

A positive, focused mind can enhance and deliver on perhaps a bigger scale than once ever believed.

Further Reading

To improve your performance, consider planing your nutrition and getting your head in the best possible mindset. Motivation gets you started, nutrition provides you with the fuel to perform and knowledge helps you make the most of your training sessions.

Our blogs will provide you with lots of advice to help you become your best and our infrared sportswear will help your body's function. Best the best version of yourself.

KYMIRA Sport - Powered by YOU

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.