Are you eating enough to get the results your after?
You may have heard this before – eating less is beneficial for your health, longevity, and well-being.
In fact, certain cultures take this principal quite seriously. In Japan,2 a nation with one of the longest life expectancies at 84.3 years, have a rule called Hara Hachi bu. The teaching translates to eating until you are eight parts (out of ten) full.
While caloric restriction can be helpful for the average person, eating too little isn’t great for everyone, especially those looking to optimise their athletic performance, build muscle, lose etc.
Today’s post will outline several signs that you might not be eating as much as you should.
Sign 1: Your Performance is Stagnating
Do you train consistently and push yourself hard? Yet, despite your efforts, your performance doesn’t improve: you can’t lift more weight or do more reps. If that’s the case, you might be under-eating.
Not eating enough can impact your recovery, stop you from building muscle, and keep you in the same place with your training.
Sign 2: You’re Not Building Muscle
Not everyone wants to build muscle, but failing to see any muscular development despite training hard could indicate under-eating.
Optimal muscle growth requires a caloric surplus––consuming more calories than you burn. As a result, your body has all the energy it needs to sustain itself, and the extra calories promote muscle gain.
Sign 3: You Get Tired Easily
Getting tired could result from various things, including dehydration, sleep deprivation, and overtraining. But, in many cases, excessive fatigue is mainly due to not eating enough.
As a result, your body doesn’t have the fuel to sustain a specific intensity level, and you get tired before completing your workouts.
Sign 4: You Struggle to Recover Between Workouts
Another sign of under-eating is impaired recovery. If you often feel sore for multiple days and start each workout in an under-recovered state, you might not be getting enough calories or sufficient protein.
For example, let’s say that you train on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. If you feel okay on Monday but always feel sore and tired on Wednesday, it could mean your body doesn’t have the fuel it needs to recover on time.
Sign 5: You Experience Odd Aches More Frequently
Anyone who’s trained consistently for any length of time will tell you:
Aches are part of the game.
But, if you experience odd aches all the time, it could mean your body isn’t getting enough of the nutrients it needs to heal itself. As a result, exercise-induced damage to tissues (muscle, ligaments, tendons, bones, etc.) stacks, often putting you at risk of overuse injuries.
The Bottom Line
Under-eating might not seem that bad, especially for people looking to shed some fat. But, not getting the energy and nutrients your body needs can hinder your performance, stop you from making progress, and put you at a higher risk of injury.
Inspect your nutritional habits if you’re dealing with any of the symptoms mentioned above, and make an effort to eat more food.
ENZED understands the importance of good nutrition while you train, we even have a valued nutritionist who guides our members. As always, speak to one of our team members if you have any questions.