Today, I'll share an insight (and maybe some new info for you) after a recent client interaction.
I was talking with a client and she was going to have a quick turn-around in between sessions with me (as in, she trained at night, then was coming back the next morning).
We were engaged in a talk about how to prep for the next day's workout.
This was at about 7 PM, and she wouldn't be home until probably 7:30 PM.
Me: "Alright, now go home and grab a good dinner. Get your protein in, and some carbs, like rice or potato."
Her: "I thought you weren't supposed to eat carbs at night?"
It was then i realized that even my current clients are subject to bad, or out-dated information, because sometimes we don't get to chat about this stuff on the regular.
No matter how many emails I write, or questions I answer, I can't compete with the day-to-day influx of information from media that can scare you with wrong, or misleading, advice.
Now, because I'm involved in the industry and it's what I do for a living, I always have my finger on the pulse of current information out there.
Information that is believed to be true, right now, at this point in time.
Because info, and studies, change very often.
So I was disappointed (in myself mostly) that she was still under the impression that carbs at night would automatically lead to fat gain.
Here's the question of the day: Do you?
If you do, don't feel bad. Research is always evolving, so it can be tough to stay up-to-date with nutritional and training sciences.
Besides, that's why you read my emails. To get info.
Anyways, the thought of "nutrient timing," as it was believed in the early 2000s, is not as hard and fast as we once thought.
It used to be believed that carbs at night would make you gain weight, body fat, and hurt your body composition.
Now, we are seeing that the timing of meals, and when you have your carbs, aren't as important as you may think.
That's not to say the timing, and makeup of your diet isn't important. It is.
It's just not as big of a deal as once believed.
What is most important when it comes to fat loss and better body composition is the total caloric deficit (cals in vs. cals out) that you are in at the end of the day.
I’ll repeat that again:
The timing of your nutrients (protein, carbs, fats) isn’t as important to those looking for improved body composition as the total caloric deficit at the end of the day.
Of course, the makeup of those calories - how many grams of carbs, protein, fat - is still hugely important if you're trying to look good nekked.
But eating a protein-only breakfast, or skipping carbs at dinner, doesn’t make a noticeable enough difference to warrant the stress over it all.
So monitor your total intake, look at the big picture of your day, opposed to sweating the minutiae of timing it all just right.
Hopefully that gives you a little more freedom, and a little less pressure, when considering what to have for dinner.
Get tons of veggies, but if you decide you want a bit of starch (potato, rice, pasta) in the evening, you will still keep your progress.
And follow what I call the “Slow 80 Rule”:
Eat slowly, and stop when you’re 80% full.
This will help you keep your total calories in check, without you feeling like you’re being deprived.
That's crucial for long-term "diet" success.
Till next time friends,
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