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Carbs are the most bullied group on the food pyramid, no thanks to popular diets such as the Atkins and Paleo. Although these regiments have their respective merits, they've also helped construe a dark image of carbohydrates in which dieters have increasingly become fearful of carbohydrates and erroneously come to believe that carbs are what make them fat. Thankfully, there also seems to be a growing counter movement for the war on the war on carbs and as a result, more athletes and weekend warriors are learning to use carbs to their advantage
First off, let’s break down the role that carbohydrates play in the function of your body.
Calories (or energy) can be broken down into three categories, called macro-nutrients. These are: proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Alcohol is often considered it’s own “fourth” macro-nutrient, however, anyone serious about their diet is unlikely to be inclusive of alcohol to their regular dietary intake. Simply put, proteins are the building blocks of body tissue, whether building, maintaining, or repairing. Fats are important to hormonal functions and insulating our joints. Finally, carbs are the most dominant and important source of energy, particularly for athletic performance and activities of high intensity. Although fats can be a perfectly good energy source for sitting around and being generally inactive, carbohydrates are of invaluable necessity for anyone seeking to physically excel in any demand.
With that being said, it is not carbohydrates themselves that are making you fat, it is the rate at which you are active (or inactive) in comparison to the amounts in which you are consuming your fuel sources (AKA, food.) If you are not expelling energy, it is unnecessary and excessive to be putting it in and thatwill make you fat. But let’s focus in on howand whycarbs are so important to the physically active…
Your body has three primary energy systems: the phosphagen system, the glycolytic system and the aerobic, or oxidative, system. Although the use of any one of these systems isn't exclusive, the intensity and duration of physical activity determine which of these systems dominate how your tissues function. High-intensity activities such as interval training, CrossFit, Strongman, and most conventional sports, rely heavily on the glycolytic system to provide the body with energy.
The glycolytic system itself is fueled by the substrates glucose and glycogen. When you ingest carbohydrates, your body breaks down these sugars into glucose and when there is excess, stores that glucose as glycogen which is stored in the muscles, liver and even the brain. During exercise, especially that of high-intensity, glucose is the primary source of energy while glycogen serves as back-up storage when those glucose levels become depleted. Resultantly, two conclusions to be reached here in that, A) the more readily available that glucose is in the body, the less your body will need to resort to backup storage, and B) the better your glycogen store, the less likely you are to entirely deplete the necessary energy source in such a way that would devastate physical performance.
So what can we determine about our intake of carbohydrates based on these two concepts?
Intra (During) Workout Carbohydrates
Post (After) Workout Carbohydrates
Immediately post workout and the few hours following, your body is most ready to replenish glycogen stores. Consuming carbohydrates during this time is especially important to ensuring that energy resources are back to peak levels for your next workout.
The quality of the carbohydrates you intake during these periods, both intra and post, are important. Carbohydrates can be scaled by the rate at which your body metabolizes the intake into energy from 0 to 100 on what is called the Glycemic Index (GI). A “low” rating is generally considered to be under 60 while a “high” rating would above 80. The lower the GI, the more slowly the body will digest it versus a higher number which indicates a quick rate of conversion.
During your workout, you want to consume high GI carbohydrates so that they can be quickly shuttled to the muscles. The same goes for immediately post workout carbohydrates in which speedy uptake will aid in both muscle growth and prevention of muscle loss. Certain sports drinks, supplements, or juices that are high in glucose or sucrose are excellent sources for intra and immediately post workout carbs. During the several hours following your workout, carbohydrates will still be important but the rate of digestion will not need to be as fast as intra and post workout. The further away from your workout, the lower on the GI scale those carbohydrates will be in foods such as quinoa, brown rice, or sweet potatoes.
Don’t let the rumors pull you in and don’t get drawn into fad diets that cut out or manipulate carbohydrates in a way that drains you of the energy stores necessary to perform well. Even if you aren’t a competitive athlete, peak performance levels in the gym translate to greater gains in fitness and physique. Fear not! If you can learn the vital role that carbohydrates play in your body and master your macros, food will be your greatest ally.
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Ladies' Triblend Racerback Tank
|Length (inches)||26 7/8||27 1/2||28 1/8||28 3/4||29 3/8|
|Width (inches)||15||16||17||18||19 1/2|
*These are not preshrunk.
We advise you to measure your arm when in a locked out with your muscles relaxed. Select the size below that best fits both measurements.
|Size||2" below (in)||2" above (in)|
|XS||8.20 - 10.20||9.40 - 11.80|
|S||9.40 - 10.40||10.60 - 13.20|
|M||10.60 - 12.60||11.80 - 14.60|
|L||11.80 - 13.80||13.00 - 15.90|
|XL||13.0 - 15.0||14.20 - 17.30|
|2XL||14.20 - 16.10||15.30 - 18.70|
|3XL||15.20 - 17.10||16.30 - 19.70|
|4XL||16.20 - 18.10||17.30 - 20|
For specific sizing please refer to the product page size chart.
TUFF 7mm X-Training Knee Sleeves
How to Size: Measure circumference of the knee (mid-patella) in a locked position (muscles must be relaxed). Unisex sizes.
|S||11.8 in. - 13.0 in.|
|M||13.0 in. - 14.2 in.|
|L||14.2 in. - 15.7 in.|
|XL||15.7 in. - 17.0 in.|
|XXL||17.0 in. - 18.3 in.|
*If you prefer a tighter fit please order one size smaller than your measurement.
TUFF 7mm Power Series Knee Sleeves
How to Size: Measure circumference of the knee (mid-patella) in a locked position (muscles must be relaxed). If your calves are bigger than your knee measurement, we recommend using the circumference of your calf
|Sizes||Measured in inches|
|XS||12" - 13.3"|
|S||13.3" - 14.5"|
|M||14.5" - 15.7"|
|L||15.7" - 17"|
|XL||17" - 17.7"|
|XXL||17.7" - 18.5"|
|3XL||18.5" - 19.3"|
|4XL||19.3" - 20"|