Amino Acids: Are the building blocks of proteins. They are divided in essential (must be daily consumed) and non-essential (can be converted from the essential amino acids).
Anabolic process: It’s a hormone and metabolic state that allows the body to absorb and store nutrients. With the right balance of carbohydrates, proteins, minerals, and water the body can be placed in anabolic state to recover muscles from exercise faster. On the other hand, the wrong balance of nutrients can lead to an anabolic process of body fat and not the recovery of muscles mass.
Carbohydrates: It´s the main source of energy for the cells and it can be found in simple forms such as sugars or complex forms such as starches and fiber. The body breaks down most sugars and starches into glucose, a simple structure that the body can use to feed its cells.
Catabolic process: it’s a hormone and metabolic state that allows the body to break down nutrients to provide energy to the body. Whenever the sources of carbohydrates are low, the body starts depleting at a higher rate the body protein that mostly comes from muscle mass. This is the reason why protein and carbohydrate intake play a significant role in an athlete´s recovery process.
Craving: A powerful desire for carbohydrates.
Dehydration: Dehydration refers to a state where there is an inadequate amount of fluid in the body. People who participate in endurance sports or long workouts are particularly at risk of becoming dehydrated quickly. A person is considered dehydrated when they have lost more than 2% of their body weight during exercise.
Energy: It is a measure of power or the capacity of a vigorous activity. It comes from food and drink, in particular from carbohydrate, protein, fat and alcohol. This energy is measured in kilojoules (kJ) or calories (kcal), with 1 kilocalorie equivalent to 4.2 kilojoules.
Exercise Intensity: Low, moderate and high levels of exercise intensity are measured by heart rate and metabolic changes and they can be defined as follows: Low (or light) is about 40-54% Maximum Heart Rate (MHR). Moderate is 55-69% MHR. High (or vigorous) is equal to or greater than 70% MHR.
Exercise Recovery: Low intense exercise that involves a number of steps that are essential for any exercise regime; regardless of fitness level, the type of physical activity or the exercise intensity. Exercise recovery helps the body to recover from the physical and psychological strains caused by physical activity. It involves warming-down and stretching as well as nutrition, rehydration, rest and sleep.
Fatigue: Extreme tiredness, typically resulting from mental or physical effort or illness.
Glycogen: Is a big molecule that combines carbohydrates and water that allows our body to store this source of energy at the muscular level and also in the liver. Even though it has limited storage capacity, glycogen is the body’s main source of energy during moderate to high-intensity activity and its depletion is directly connected with performance during exercise.
Immune system: The immune system is the body’s defense against infectious organisms and other invaders. Through a series of steps called the immune response, the immune system attacks organisms and substances that invade body systems and cause diseases. The immune system is also sensitive to metabolic, hormonal, and behavioral changes. Exercise is considered a stress factor to the immune system, being able to make positive or negative changes depending on the intensity and duration of exercise.
Metabolic window: It is the term used to describe the 30-minute period after exercise. During this period nutrition can give a great impact on the athlete´s recovery process.
Minerals and Vitamins: Are part of the four groups of essential nutrients, together with essential fatty acids, and essential amino acids. They work mainly to regulate most of the essential functions of the body, although they are needed in small amounts.
Protein: One of the three nutrients used as energy sources (calories) by the body. Proteins are essential components of the muscle, skin, and bones. Proteins and carbohydrates each provide around 4 calories of energy per gram.