For Many, This Is The Key To Sustained Energy And Endurance
“There is a difference between burning fat and burning sugar. While your body can burn either fuel, it is far better off burning fat. Fat is the body’s fuel of choice. Fat, not sugar, is our most inexhaustible and healthy energy resource.”
One of our main objectives at PEERtrainer is to help people find ways to increase their energy levels. Many of our articles and tips are focused on this. Energy is also one of the three “pillars” that we focus on in our Point Of No Return Program. It is a big and complex objective, and it is important that people take their time and go easy on themselves as they make the adjustments necessary.
Like our approach to weight loss, we tend to identify ways to reach this goal that are often new or done in a different manner. The reality is that far too many people do not have the energy they need or want, and there are a series of slight adjustments one can take to change this aspect of your life.
The first step we focus on is a reduction in sugar, and to stop viewing sugar as a primary source of energy. (Here is the video in case you missed it) When you start to reduce your sugar intake, you set in motion a process where your body can start to burn more fat, to rely on fat as an energy source not sugar. We also point to the benefits of greens and vegetable soups to help you get the nutrients that will increase your energy. This article focuses on the next step in that process.
The next step is to Slow Down and rethink the idea you hold in your head of what “ideal” exercise is. When you do an intense workout, you often trigger our innate “fight or flight” mechanism, which is designed to get us out of trouble quickly. This intense process primarily uses sugar as an energy source. When you move slowly, your body primarily uses fat as an energy source.
Key Concept: When you get your body into a mode where you burn fat, you tap into a virtually unlimited energy source. The ideas presented in this article are the ones that helped Stu Mittleman break the American record for running 100 miles in a day. Our observation is that these ideas are probably useful to people who want energy to perform less intense tasks!!
Stu explains how this works on pages 124-125 of his book Slow Burn. He points out that our bodies store about 2,500 sugar calories, but have a minimum of 130,000 fat calories available. When you burn fat your body does not “freak out” and want you to replace immediately.
If you burn 500 calories in a high intensity workout, most likely you are burning sugar. In this case your body starts to send signals out to replace that sugar ASAP. Hence sugar cravings. When you approach exercise in a more comfortable and enjoyable pace, you can begin to draw from the broader sources of energy in your body.
Here is a video we made that explains this idea in greater detail:
This concept of might sound simple, but the difficulty lies in the fact that the dominant fitness culture promotes intense workouts followed by ingesting sugary sports drinks. For whatever reason, this is just what we do. And sometimes it feels really good when you want to relieve stress, to really knock it out of your system.
Most likely you are familiar with the phrase “no pain, no gain.” For many of us, our ideal vision workout might be an hour of a high level spinning class. We associate ideal exercise with these high intensity workouts.
But it is common sense if you think about it. Our bodies over the years were built to store fat to keep us alive as we moved around long distances. We moved slowly, and our bodies adapted to give us energy to move long distances.
If you are part of the Point of No Return Program we would like you to take some time and listen to the following interview with Stu that we did. It serves as a great introduction to his philosophy:
PEERtrainer interview with Stu Mittleman
-As you shift from a sugar burning to fat burning focus, you are likely to experience less physical pain.
-You are likely to experience fewer sugar cravings.
-Comfortable workouts are more enjoyable, which makes them easy to motivate for.
-Walking is a fat burning exercise!
-This shift may well improve your overall mood.
A Simple Diet Approach To Help Sustain Your Energy
At PEERtrainer we have recently developed a new (and free) guide to help guide people to the foods that will help give them energy as well as help promote recovery.
We call this the “PEERtrainer Cheat System” and that link will take you to a page where you can download and read it.
We also have created a series of recipes which help you easily follow through on the principles outlined in the system. The feedback from runners and dieters alike has been very positive.