Refeed: the keys to recovering hydrates after training
Nutrition plays an essential role in an athlete’s performance. Recharging energy after a workout contributes to a better restoration. This time it is necessary to emphasize the role of the refeed, consisting of an overfeeding of carbohydrates over a limited period of time, which usually goes from five hours to the whole day.
It should be clarified that refeed or hydrate recharge is not related to what is known as day trap, where you can eat what you want without fear of exceeding the calories. In the case of refeed, the procedure is more planned, since it addresses excess calories plus the amounts consumed are under control. It is about ingesting many carbohydrates, few fats and moderate proteins. With all this you will know exactly what the refeed consists of.
It is customary to use refeed to combat the negative effects on the body of calorie limitation, especially when it is exaggeratedly belligerent. This limitation leads to loss of muscle mass, increased insulin in fat cells and cortisol, reduced metabolism and also testosterone, among many other effects. This implies that the body will adapt to be more effective by reducing the calorific expenditure.
Hydrate reloading is also a valuable tool from a psychological point of view, as one of the greatest dangers of diet failure lies in mental exhaustion achieved by a very excessive diet.
What’s the hydrate recharge for?
The refeed is used mainly in seasons of definition, since in these periods diets are made low in calories, known as hypocaloric, and what most affects, without doubt, is the consumption of carbohydrates, with an essential reduction. By ingesting few carbohydrates, glycogen stores are not completed, which will affect performance in the preparatory sessions.
In addition, psychological relief, acceleration of metabolism and readjustment of hormones, which help to regulate weight, should also be highlighted. Among them is leptin, which increases heat output and the feeling of satiety.
A carbohydrate recharge should not affect a healthy diet. In the case of refeed, it’s about eating healthy food. As a general rule, it is advisable to ingest carbohydrates of medium or high glycaemic index, which will allow us to recharge the glycogen earlier. These products include pasta, potatoes, cereals, rice, bread, etc.
The consumption of sugars should not exceed one hundred grams, while with regard to protein, the maximum tolerated is around two with two g / kg, ensuring that these proteins are from the meat. As far as fat is concerned, it must not exceed 0,5 g/kg.
Advantages and disadvantages of refeed for athletes
The primary advantages of refeed or hydrate recharge are linked primarily to psychological issues, largely due to the fact that high intake of carbohydrates over a specific period of time provides essential dietary rest and helps alleviate the symptoms of heat limitation. Another aspect to emphasize is that it allows to increase the muscular glycogen, with the following increase of the performance and improvement of the physical aspect.
On the negative side of the refeed is that many times it can lead to a change in diet translated into a binge of groceries. That is why self-control and a definition stage without major deprivation or calorific deficits are essential so that the impulses do not turn against each other and end up in something negative.
Always remember to consult your doctor or dietician in all circumstances about any change you wish to make in your nutrition as an athlete
to Slimming in the Gym – Nutrition for athletes
What you’ll find in the book:
- 10 Chapters with all the information about the athlete’s nutrition and diet.
- Recipes for dishes that will help you lose fat.
- Selection of the most advisable foods for practising sport
- Tables and routines of exercises by muscle groups
- PDF format