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Can nutrition be a barrier to improving fitness levels?

Nutrition is almost always the barrier to improving fitness levels or breaking through plateaus. Poor nutrition means poor fitness and improper nutrition for your fitness goal equates to no progress.
From a body composition standpoint (amount of fat and muscle), nutrition is 100% responsible for exercise induced changes. In other words if you are trying to lose body fat and you eat too many calories compared to the amount you burn, you will not lose fat and you’ll plateau. From a performance standpoint, not eating properly before an event or training, prevents optimal energy potential to perform best when compared to consuming the ideal amount and percentages of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. No one maximize their health, fitness or training/exercise outcomes by randomly eating, so keep in mind the information below.
Proper nutrition can be for everyone:

1. Maximize your health and functional longevity potential.
2. Be 100% responsible for controlling weight up or down including adding muscle – i.e. you can’t add muscle or grow if you don’t eat – and if you don’t eat right, growth and strength can’t be maximized.

Proper nutrition can be for athletes and exercisers:

1. Maximize each event performance including optimizing mental focus by properly loading and reloading energy and fluids.
2. Enhance each training outcome because properly timed meals with the right nutrients will build more muscle and strength than “random eating”. In other words, your body will spend more time and energy building muscle rather than simply repairing the exercise damaged tissues – every workout should make you better, bigger, faster or stronger.
3. Contribute to an extended competitive lifespan. By maintaining proper nutrition the body receives a steady flow of the “right stuff”, which means less wear and tear thus a natural slowing of the athletic aging process.
4. Control athletic weight because diet is solely responsible for achieving ideal playing weight.

Nutrition is a major barrier people face when trying to improve their fitness. Your body is very similar to the engine in your car. If you give it the right fuel, it runs well. If you give it the wrong or inadequate fuel, it may still run, but there is going to be a lot more breakdowns. Poor nutrition will not provide the body with the necessary energy to run at peak efficiency. Improvements in fitness rely on your body's compensation to increased demands. For example, if you lift increasingly heavier weights, your body compensates by creating more muscle tissue. Without the proper nutrients, your body will not be able to build this muscle tissue, and your fitness progress will stall. You will see the same impediments along the entire fitness spectrum. Whether you are trying to increase stamina, strength, power, speed, quickness, or flexibility, nutrition is a vital piece of your program. Proper nutrition must become a lifestyle choice and is not something you only invest in periodically.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.