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PuppyChow Profile
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Registered: 03-2006
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Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


I'm of the opinion that the one of the best things you can do for your "dag game" is to be in the best possible general health that you can manage.

This means staying hydrated, eating right, getting some exercise, and keeping the drugs and alcohol to a minimum (sorry guys =P).

Food is something that's REALLY important, and often especially neglected at Events. Keeping your body nourished with good food and water will make sure you have the energy you need to fight your best.

A pre-battle meal is important, and often neglected. Just make sure you give yourself time to digest(likely at least an hour, more if you eat a lot). This might mean getting up a little earlier, or grabbing something convenient on the way to weapons check. You're going to want to make sure whatever you eat has lots of complex carbs and protein to give you energy for the day. (Fresh fruits, whole grains, power bars, etc.) Foods with a lot of fat are going to sit in your stomach, and are probably not the best for you anyway =P

A post-battle meal is also important, and here you're looking for lean proteins (chicken, fish, soy, low-fat dairy)to help repair those muscles. Fast food, though convenient and cheap, is not doing your body any favors. A good meal at night is going to help prepare you for the next day, and also any drug induced trauma you're going to put your body through.

Frequent snacks will keep your blood sugar levels even and help fight fatigue.

Most people need around 2,000 calories a day. This is going to be more or less dependent on your activity level, age, body size, etc. There are a lot of calorie calculators out there to help you figure out just how much you should be eating. Most of these calories need to be coming from whole grains, fruits/veggies, and lean protein, NOT sugar and fat.

If you fight, and fight hard, you're going to burn A LOT of calories. Probably around 1,000 or more for a 150lb person fighting for 3 hours. (For those of you who leave events 5-10lbs lighter, you probably can figure out why. =P)This means you're going to need to eat at least 3,000 calories to give your body the energy it needs. That's a lot of food, so EAT.

Regular exercise outside of Dag is also going to help a lot. The CDC recommends "2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (i.e., brisk walking) every week and muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms)" for adults. http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html

Endurance training and cardio are great, and I've heard REALLY good things about Interval Training, not only for Dag but for overall fitness as well. Guaranteed to make you run faster and jump higher XD. If you don't know what interval training is, look it up.

Also, make sure you STRETCH BEFORE AND AFTER fighting. Before is going to help you prevent injury (don't over-stretch cold muscles, though), and after is going to improve your flexibility.

Be good to your body, and it's going to be good to you back.

Last edited by PuppyChow, 3/31/2010, 11:39 am
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Sindaric Profile
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


That's some really awesome information. Giving your body good fuel to burn and stretching is often over looked. Thanks for the good tips yo.

The bit about interval training is great. Here are a few links, if anyone is curious like I was.
Interval training Info 1
 
Interval training 2

---
Proud member of the Fraternal Order of the Dirty Thirty.
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Karigan Morkishky Profile
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


interval training kicks my ass.
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Brawnik Profile
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Registered: 05-2009
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


again awesome topic... that complex carb meals before fighting is especially helpful.
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Atalan Profile
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


On a note for stretching:

Good flexibility helps decrease the risk of some types of injuries. After your normal workout consider adding a flexibility section(while there is no conclusive evidence that warm muscles experience more benefits from the same exercise there is no evidence it does not). This can include simple static stretching for 15-45 seconds at a stretch distance that is tight, but not painful. Multiple repetitions of the stretch will increase effectiveness. Beware of using stretches that place undue stress on the back and neck. Avoid 'bouncing' while stretching, especially if the stretch is being assisted.

Do not overdo your pre-fight stretching. Stretching before fighting is supposed to be a warm up, not a stretching exercise in and of itself. Doing too much will make it more difficult for your muscles to achieve the same tension and reduce your performance while fighting.



---
Treasurer, Fury of the Called.
Vision without a plan is hallucination.
I do not ask for fewer foes, I only ask for a stronger axe.
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PuppyChow Profile
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


I wish I could "Like" things, like on facebook. This will have to do:

Image
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Arias Silverfyre Profile
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


I can attest that the aerobic exercises outside of dag help wonders. Recently started going to the gym and I've already seen improvements in my running stamina.



---
Arias of Eryndor
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Knight of the Order of the Janky Pommel

“The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.”
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Yozomiri Profile
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Re: Some notes on Nutrition and General Fitness.


Doing some basic cardio is wonderful thing to make you feel better and just last longer on the battlefield. I'd love for everyone to just go for a walk or run or bike ride a few times a week.

If you're planning on doing it with any regularity or conviction, though, I have to recommend doing some sort of interval training over steady-state cardio. All interval training is is regularly changing the intensity of the workout between high/low periods. This will work your body a lot harder than just running at the same speed forever, and as a consequence it will build more stamina and burn more calories than steady-state cardio and it will do it in a shorter period of time, to boot. Typically 20 minutes of interval training is worth 60 minutes of steady-state training.

If you're just starting off, this can be just as simple as switching between high/low resistance/speed periods on a(n) elliptical/treadmill/bike/sidewalk. A decent plan I've seen for beginners interested in running is the Couch to 5K plan.

If you're a bit more advanced, try high-intensity interval training (abbreviated HIIT). It's essentially the same thing, but even harder (and consequently more awesome). The idea is to do a moderate-intensity activity for some amount of time and then switch to a maximum-intensity activity for some amount of time. All HIIT plans work with that basic form: the differences are just changes in period length and activity. HIIT has the happy benefit of corresponding nicely to Dagorhir activity. Fights tend to be a lot of walking, positioning, posturing, etc. interspersed with short periods of high activity.

The HIIT training Arc and I use is the Tabata Protocol (known colloquially as "Four Minutes of Hell"). A full workout might be three or four rounds of exercise. A round consists of eight sets of activity, and each set is 20 seconds of move-as-if-your-life-depended-on-it exercise and 10 seconds of rest (so 30 seconds per set, 4 minutes per round, 12-16 minutes for a workout). It might not sound that bad, but by the end of the second set you'll be thinking otherwise.

We try to do one exercise for each major muscle region (lower body, core, upper body). Possible exercises include burpees, squats, lunges, situps, bicycle crunches, pushups, pullups (if you're some sort of demon-god-masochist), and so on. It really only requires that the exercise be intense and capable of getting your heart/breathing rate to its max (toe-ups, planks, chairs, and the like are right out).

Interval training can be intense, painful work, but it's totally worth it.

Last edited by Yozomiri, 4/26/2010, 3:31 pm
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