Food IS fuel. Without significant amounts of carbohydrates, fats, and protein energy can not be stored, broken down, and used to power our bodies for training. Optimal physiological responses can not occur without adequate substrates that come directly from carbohydrates. Our main energy system that is important for events lasting longer than 2 minutes is the Aerobic System. The human body absolutely needs carbohydrates and fats in order to adapt and improve Aerobic Foundation (AF) processing rates, Prolonged Aerobic Capacity (PAC), and Aerobic Rate Capacity (ARC).
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The newest fad being touted as the “secret to success” for endurance training is to train and eat to become “metabolically efficient”. What exactly does this mean? The term efficiency combined with metabolism sounds like an athlete’s dream, especially to an endurance athlete. After all, efficiency means to “save energy without waste or unnecessary effort.” Well, this surely must be the key to success for endurance performance; go as long as possible and waste as little energy as possible. Unfortunately, this new fad is just that, a FAD! “Metabolic efficiency” training or fueling to enhance performance will come at a cost, a big cost which happens to be your performance.