Your Body, Your Way—Protein Power
Fitness and bodybuilding are at a new era. Where will we go with it? With fitness competitions and bodybuilding on the rise, people are finding alternate ways to exercise and incorporate new equipment along with new body movements to better the mind and alter the body. New supplements and vitamins are also emerging. Today, there are more supplement brands in the market than ever before.
Whether you go to the gym once a week or everyday, your muscles need to be fed and one basic supplement is key: protein. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues, to grow and to heal. When you’re lifting weights, you’re creating small tears in tissues and muscle fibers so consuming protein 30 minutes after your workout is crucial. The protein you take in after a workout will help facilitate rapid repair of those tissues. According to the Institute of Medicine, the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein for the average adult is 0.8 grams per kilogram or .36 grams per pound of body weight.
However, in order for you to start taking shape and gain lean muscle mass you should shoot for 1 gram of protein to every pound in bodyweight. Someone weighing 160 pounds needs to consume around 160 grams of protein a day. This can be a real challenge to accomplish while only eating your regular meals. Protein shakes are almost a necessity in order to reach that number of grams every day. Plan out your meals for the week. There’s a lot of truth to the statement that “abs are made in the kitchen.”
To get to that level of dietary protein, meal prepping will help keep you on track and save you money. Stay away from processed foods and sugar. Keep high sources of protein around such as chicken breasts, fish, eggs, and Greek yogurt. Egg whites and chicken are my favorite to keep around because they’re easy to prepare and can be used in many dishes and they both have a high protein rating. The protein in eggs is considered to be the highest quality of protein found in any food, but chicken is also a great source of protein. Baked chicken is less dry than grilling and is full of flavor. Throw your chicken breasts in a pan with a can of cream of chicken soup. Add some lemon pepper and any other seasonings you like. Bake at 350 for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Let it cool and enjoy. You won’t be disappointed!
Everyone was given one body and you have to take care of it. Arnold Schwarzenegger said in Pumping Iron that he saw himself as a sculpture. We all have the ability to modify our bodies in any way we choose, but exercise will only take you so far. Power up with protein and carve your own sculpture.