Nutrition Articles

High Performance Nutrition - Part 2

Recommendations for Very Active People


Nutrient Needs Based on Activity Level and Body Weight



Very Active


2.3 to 3.2 grams/lb
(5 to 7 grams/kg)

 3.2 to 5.5 grams/lb
(7-12 grams/kg)


 0.6 to 0.75 grams/lb
(1.2 to 1.4 grams/kg)

0.8 to 1.0 grams/lb
(1.6-1.8 grams/kg)


Balance of total calories after meeting above requirements

Balance of total calories after meeting above requirements

Note: To avoid performance declines, people attempting to lose weight while engaging in demanding athletic training should not reduce their calorie intakes by more than 10-20% (or by more than 500-1,000 calories per day). For good health, total fat intake should not fall below 15% of total calories.

Meal Contents & Timing for Very Active People

The Pre-Exercise Meal: Your individual reaction should be the primary factor that determines what, when and how much you eat prior to exercise. For many, eating before exercise enhances performance—especially during long exercise sessions that can exhaust glycogen reserves. Since most people find it difficult to exercise with a full stomach, you should allow plenty of time for digestion (about 3-4 hours before exercise) in order to get the energy benefits of a pre-exercise meal.

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About The Author

Dean Anderson Dean Anderson
Dean Anderson has master's degrees in human services (behavioral psychology/stress management) and liberal studies. His interest in healthy living began at the age of 50 when he confronted his own morbid obesity and health issues. He joined SparkPeople and lost 150 pounds and regained his health. Dean has earned a personal training certification from ACE and received training as a lifestyle and weight management consultant. See all of Dean's articles.

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