When you are working to make yourself stronger and increase your abilities, you begin to look at every aspect of your life. Do you sleep enough? Are you under too much stress? Are you getting the right mix of macronutrients?
Many people think that someone who is engaging in workouts like barre Pilates needs more protein than they otherwise would. However, the truth is a little more complex than that. It’s a common misperception that most people are not getting enough protein. Other people think that you need significantly more protein on a day when you have an exercise class. The truth is, if you are getting enough calories, you are probably getting enough protein.
Getting enough protein each day.
Each individual’s protein needs are different. They will depend on your age, your body fat percentage, your daily activity level, your gender and your age. In general, most people need up to a gram of protein for every kilogram in body weight. So, if you weigh 130 pounds (58.9 kg), you should get a little under 60 grams of protein every day.
Protein doesn’t have to come from a single source or a single meal. Most people get a bit throughout the day through regular meals and snacks. Vegetable sources will have what are known as “incomplete” proteins, because they do not contain the mix of amino acids that meat sources have. However, by eating proteins from a variety of sources throughout the day, you’ll get all the nutrients you need.
Choosing the best protein sources.
It’s not uncommon for people to think that they need to eat special protein shakes or smoothies to get the right protein mix. Food sources of protein, however, are best. We like the lean protein that comes from sources like fish, lean meat, chicken breast and vegetable sources like quinoa or whole grains. Throughout the day, you can get protein from snacks that include Greek yogurt, nuts and cheese.
Protein-rich foods make a great snack or meal on the days when you are on the go from work to barre class to other obligations. Start your day with some overnight oatmeal made with milk and some added nuts or seeds, for instance. This can help you feel full longer and can provide the energy needed to meet all your demands.
In the end, the best thing to do is to pursue a balanced diet with a wide range of food choices. By eating a variety of foods, you can best ensure that you are getting all the nutrients you need for the performance that you want. Include leafy greens, whole grains, nuts and lean protein sources to keep up your energy while nourishing your body.