I'd like to discuss the different foods that I had to intake throughout my regime. These meal plans were provided by my coach Ariel Alberto, a professional nutritional expert and bodybuilder whose clients are covered with athletes who have also earned and been registered as professionals by the International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness. My meals started simple as I was on 6 meals per day with a separation of 2-3 hours between meals. This gap and timing between meals is meant to help with insulin production but only for athletes as exercise is what stabilizes the insulin sensitivity because without often exercise, your pancreas will be overworked and make it difficult for you to lose weight (Gladish, 2015). This diet regime persisted for 2 years in order to prepare and sculpt my body for the competition. It is here that I learned that patience is the most valuable virtue for bodybuilders.
Every food that was in my meals served a specific purpose. Though my diet primarily consisted of chicken breast, ground turkey or beef, and protein shakes, I would like to focus on foods that serve a more technical purpose for my body that are usually not common knowledge. My main source of carbohydrates were usually either from rice, because I would ask for it, or sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes served a unique design for my body. As Matthew Kadey, registered dietitians, explains that sweet potatoes contain beta carotene, a source of vitamin A that is converted to support our immune system, aid in cell growth, and assists with stabilizing our blood sugar (Kadey, 2018). Another food that was a staple of my diet was asparagus. Kelly Nardo, another nutrition coach expert, explains that asparagus provides many benefits. It contains a high amount of protein, helps our body break down carbohydrates, and is also an additional source of vitamins (Nardo, 2018). Additionally, asparagus is a diuretic and helps bodybuilders void unnecessary supplemental weight. My diet plan consisted of balancing my carbohydrates and proteins. I ate low glycemic carbohydrates such as oatmeal, brown rice, or sweet potatoes before my workout and eating a post workout meal with high glycemic carbohydrates such as white rice, bagels or rice cakes. My workouts was on a five day split, this means that I trained for five days targeting a specific body part for each day then rested for two days in between. My cardio started from thirty minutes everyday and then increased every few weeks up to an hour and fifteen minutes. For my rest days, I had less carbohydrates. Most of my meals that had sweet potatoes or rice was removed for my rest day meals and my pre and post workout meals were replaced for either protein shake snack or another meat focused meal. This routine persisted for years until the day of the competition came.
Ignacio, David. (2017, August 13). Image 1 and Image 2. Spectrum Fitness Productions. NPC Men's
Gladish, Samantha. (2015, May 25). "Why Eating Every 2-3 Hours is a Bad
Idea." Holistic Wellness. Retrieved from. https://holisticwellness.ca/why-eating-every-2-3-
Kadey, Matthew. (2018, February 21). "3 Reasons and 3 Ways To Eat Sweet Potatoes." Retrieved
Nardo, Kelly. (2016, May 11). "Gains Through Asparagus." Retrieved from.
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