ROAR like a Female Athlete!

Hey my fellow female aging athletes,

Are you training, fueling and performing each month based on your hormone cycle?

I am finding that “mapping out your cycle” makes your training, fueling and recovery program so unique to YOU as a pre and peri menopausal female athlete.

Here are some of my notes from Dr. Stacy Sims book ROAR that I am reading AGAIN (3rd time makes a charm).

Dr. Stacy Sims:  Mapping The Cycle
Follicular Phase:  Low Hormone Phase
  1. Greater strength gains and produce more force vs. high hormone phase/luteal phase
  2. Endurance -workouts feel easier in low hormone phase (day 1 to ovluation)
Luteal Phase: 
  1. Key performance indicators as VO2max and lactate threshold remain constant during your cycle
  2. Technical hand/eye coordination sports performance decreased
  3. Reaction time, neuromuscular coordination and manual dexterity decreased
  4. Blood sugar levels
  5. Breathing rates
  6. Thermoregulation
  7. Slight decrease in aerobic capacity and strength
  8. Exercise feels harder during high hormone days before cycle begins

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Dr. Stacy Sims on the High Hormone Phase (Luteal) in ROAR:
  1. Estrogen turns down anabolic or growing capacity of the muscle
  2. Progesterone turns up catabolism or breakdown of muscle tissue (more difficult to access amino acids) = higher rates of muscle breakdown during hard efforts = harder to make and maintain muscle when hormones are elevated
  3. Take protein- Essential Amino Acids that are high in leucine (muscle building amino acid)
  4. Replace protein for women -30 minutes after exercise
  5. Whey protein is rich  in Leucine (Kion Whey Protein + Kion EAA) …save on Kion products with my code “Debbie+Kion”
Late Luteal Phase:  High Hormone Phase
“PMS Peak Performance”
  1. Magnesium 250mg
  2. Zinc 45mg
  3. Baby aspirin 80mg
  4. Omega 3 Fatty Acids, flaxseed, fish oil = 1 gram

Pretraining Fuel with EAA:

  1. Essential Amino Acids 5-7 grams (cross the blood brain barrier/BBB and decrease estrogen-progesterone effect on central nervous system fatigue
  2. Kion Essential Amino Acids Caps here 
In Training: higher intensity workouts
  1. High hormone Phase:  luteal phase (days 18-28/30)
    1. Aim for about 0.45 grams of carbohydrate per hour per lb/bodyweight per hour
  2. Low hormone phase: follicular phase (days 1-14)
    1. Lower carbs about 0.35 grams of carbs per lb/bodyweight per hour
  3. Note:  2.2 kg = 1 lb
Post Training:
  1. Luteal Phase:  progesterone is catabolic (breaks down muscle) and inhibits recovery – consume 20-25 grams of protein withing 30 minutes of finishing workout
  2. Aim for 0.9-1 gram of protein per pound of body weight (135 lbs = 135 grams of protein per day)

How much Leucine do you need?  It depends on your goal.

To increase muscle protein synthesis-build more muscle.  In order to make sure you’re actually getting adequate amounts of leucine to enhance the muscle-building process-  strive to supplement with MORE than the 20% found in skeletal muscle. You actually need about double the amount of leucine you’ll find in skeletal muscle, especially if you’re concerned about lean muscle and athletic recovery.LEAAs with 40% leucine are found to be more effective in a number of clinical studies when it comes to protein synthesis and muscle building.¹⁰ ¹¹ ¹² Kion Aminos

ROAR Role of Estrogen:
  1. Reduces your carb burning ability
  2. Limit glycogen stores in case of pregnancy, famine and emergency – increases fat burning and fatty acid availability
  3. Greater for endurance activities
  4. Need to eat more carbs for higher intensity activity
  5. Why we crave more carbs during high hormone PMS phase of cycle

Carbs & Luteal Phase: Dr. Stacy Sims suggests…

  1. We need more carbs during late luteal phase if doing more intense exercise/longer duration
  2. Suggested combo of 10-15 grams of protein and 40 grams of carbohydrates (200-220 calories) before a longer workout than 90 minutes
  3. Suggested 40-50 grams of carbohydrates combine with protein and fat from real food per hour during long workouts
  4. We burn more calories overall during late luteal phase (5-10% higher)

High hormones & Fluid Retention

  1. Bloating
  2. Drop in plasma volume – lower levels = thicker blood = exercise harder
High Progesterone on Performance in Late Luteal Phase:
  1. Elevates core temperature
  2. Lower blood volume – harder to sweat and cool off
  3. Shed more sodium = increases risk of heat stress and hyponatremia during endurance events as running a marathon in the heat
  4. Start drinking before you workout – preload with sodium (7.7 grams of sodium citrate and 4.5 grams of sodium chloride per litre)
  5. Avoid cramping – 5 to 7 days before your period starts – reduce cramps with magnesium, Omega 3-fatty acids, low dose baby aspirin.
  6. Avoid headaches and migraines – when hormone levels drop before the start of your menses; blood pressure changes and blood vessels dilate then constrict = stay hydrated, eat more nitric oxide (NO) foods as beets, pomegranates, and watermelon to promote dilation of blood vessels.
ROAR Daily Cbeat sheet for Female Athletes…coming soon

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