CHAPTER 3 | METABOLIC EFFICIENCY TRAINING: TEACHING YOUR BODY TO BURN MORE FAT What clearly separates metabolic efficiency from any other concept or nutrition plan is that it is easy to implement, sustainable for a long time, non-restrictive, flexible to meet your health and exercise goals and has the bottom line goal of controlling and optimizing blood sugar. This is not a diet. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t exercised in years or if you are a competitive athlete. The goals at the end of the day is to figure out which foods in what proportions best controls and optimizes your blood sugar. Depending on your training program and body composition goals, there may be different daily nutrition implementation strategies (as you will read later). Your daily nutrition plan should support the goals of improving health first and performance second. When you hear the word “training”, exercise often comes to mind. However, “training” in the frame of the concept of metabolic efficiency relates to the whole equation, which is comprised of exercise and nutrition. Based on the metabolic efficiency assessment protocol that I developed and continue to use to quantify the metabolic efficiency status and parameters of individuals, I have noticed some interesting points as it relates to an individual’s goal of becoming more metabolically efficient. There appears to be a much more significant improvement in metabolic efficiency from daily nutrition changes (controlling and optimizing blood sugar) versus exercise changes. While it is true that aerobic training can improve the body’s ability to burn more fat, it is not the only way. In fact, the contribution of changing your daily nutrition plan can account for roughly 75% of your ability to use fat better, with the other 25% coming from aerobic exercise. METABOLIC EFFICIENCY = 3/4 NUTRITION + 1/4 EXERCISE 4 This is certainly not meant to disregard the impact that aerobic exercise can have on metabolic efficiency or overall cardiovascular health. However, in this PowerTap e-book, I am only choosing to discuss the nutrition part of the Metabolic Efficiency equation.
CHAPTER 3 | METABOLIC EFFICIENCY TRAINING: TEACHING YOUR BODY TO BURN MORE FAT 5 METABOLIC EFFICIENCY: NUTRITION PRINCIPLES “... the body can do a moderately intense workout of up to 2 - 3 hours based solely on the use of their internal glycogen stores” Depending on gender and size, the average adult has about 1,300 - 2,000 calories stored as carbohydrate (commonly referred to as glycogen stores) in the liver, muscles, and a small amount in the blood. Glycogen stores can deplete rather quickly, after about 2 - 3 hours of continuous exercise at a moderate intensity. What many people do not realize is that the body can do a moderately intense workout of up to 2 - 3 hours based solely on the use of their internal glycogen stores. What does this mean? Simply stated, if you have a training session that lasts less than 2 - 3 hours, you may not need to bother feeding extra carbohydrate calories during. Of course, this depends on whether you are metabolically efficient or not and what you ate before the session. The higher carbohydrate diet you follow, the more carbohydrates you need throughout the day and during training. This is a basic biochemistry: eat more carbs, burn more carbs. You are a “sugar burner”. However, if you are teaching your body to become more metabolically efficient and thus use more of your fat as energy thereby preserving your carbohydrate stores, then you do not need to eat as many carbohydrates throughout the day and during training. Your body