FireSnake Fitness’ RapidSculpt EMS is a highly intensive training that uses a large amount of energy and increases the metabolic rate, thereby increasing your total caloric expenditure. Also, your resting metabolic rate increases so that the muscles become toned, leaner, and stronger. This leads to a reduction in fat reserves, which improves the appearance over the entire body, including the abdomen, legs, buttocks, upper body, and back. However, to compensate for this heightened energy expenditure, it is particularly important to consume quality foods/nutrients from the following groups:
- Water and other fluids
- Carbohydrates (the right ones)
- Fats (the right ones)
- Vitamins & Minerals
PRE AND POST TRAINING FLUID INTAKE
Pre-Training: Please drink at least 0.5L of water approximately 45 minutes before EMS training
Drinking a sufficient amount of still water, alkaline water, or mineral water (containing a good supply of magnesium and calcium, approx. 200 mg calcium, and 60-70 mg magnesium) is incredibly important.
Post-Training: Adding a few slices of bread and water can significantly improve the recovery effects. Ginger contains Vitamin C and gingerol, which are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory and therefore assist with recovery. Increase your water consumption for 3 – 4 days post-training to help the kidneys eliminate the metabolites that the muscles release during EMS training.
If you choose to drink mineral water after EMS training, also eat a banana, kiwi, or apple to better the magnesium that naturally occurs in mineral water better. Fruit contains a good supply of potassium, which is essential for the brain’s performance and ensuring an optimum supply to the nerves after EMS training.
Other Recommended Fluids:
- Tea: Chamomile, Green, Rooibos, Ginger
- Smoothies: Freshly prepared with lots of fruit and vegetables
- Juices: Freshly squeezed
CARBOHYDRATES (Fat Burning Advice)
If your goal is fat burning, avoid consuming carbohydrates for approximately 2 hours before EMS training. Consuming carbohydrates causes an increase in insulin distribution. This distribution reduces glucagon, which is responsible for fat metabolism. Many sports drinks and bars have a high carbohydrate content—please try to avoid these. Avoid eating/drinking these (false) carbohydrates before bedtime. If eaten close to bedtime, your insulin level is increased, creating a block in fat metabolism.
Carbohydrates are often presented as being bad for you. However, I must defend carbohydrates, particularly in terms of EMS training. I categorize carbohydrates into 2 different areas: 1) Carbohydrates that promote performance and 2) Carbohydrates that delay or inhibit performance
PERFORMANCE PROMOTING CARBOHYDRATES (eat as much of the following carbohydrates as you’d like):
- Vegetables: bell pepper, carrot, beetroot, sweet potato, broccoli, artichoke, onion, garlic, ginger, leek, cauliflower, parsnip, sprouts, kale, eggplant, etc.
- Salad: Green salad, cucumber, tomato, zucchini, cabbage, spinach, purslane, dandelion, radish
- Fungi: All edible mushroom varieties
- Fruit: Goji berries, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, bananas, pears, apples, kiwis, peaches, etc.
- Herbs: Parsley, chive, oregano, basil, marjoram, fennel, cress
- Spices: Ginger, cumin, saffron, cinnamon, pepper, chili, etc.
- Sweetener: Use Stevia, sweet leaf or honey
PERFORMANCE INHIBITING CARBOHYDRATES (You can have these once in a while, but the less frequent, the better)
- Cereal products (bread, pasta)
- Rice (opt for brown rice or cauliflower rice instead)
- Potatoes (excluding sweet potato)
- Sweet pastries
- Sweets and desserts
- Fizzy drinks, syrups, fruit juices, nectars, sweetened drinks
Proteins support the body’s ability to build structures such as connective tissue, muscles, cartilage, bones, ligaments, and even maintain good eyesight.
Here are a few great combinations of animal + vegetable protein:
- Salad with meat
- Vegetables with fish
- Eggs with sweet potatoes
- Fruit with almond milk
Foods that are a good source of protein:
- Almond flour, coconut fibers, linseed, nut flour
- Lamb, venison, turkey, chicken, beef (preferably organic)
- Fish (all kinds) and algae
- Eggs (free-range or organic)
- Trans-fatty acid (vegetable fats/hydrogenated oils): They have been chemically altered and should be avoided entirely, if possible. Trans fats make your platelets less flexible, hinder the utilization of important fatty acids, and block the conversion of omega fatty acids into tissue hormones. Trans fatty acids are not seen by our bodies as fats but are classified as “foreign.” This leads to an increase in vascular deposits in the blood vessels and mucous membranes. Trans fats are also stored as depot fats, which are difficult to convert.
- Saturated fats: Mainly found in sausages, cheese, meats, sweets, chips, etc.). Avoid as much as possible—same advice as Trans-fatty acid.
- Monounsaturated fats
- OMEGA 9 fats: Olive oil contains lots of Omega 9 fatty acids, such as valuable Vitamin E. Olive oil should be natural or virgin. This means that it has been produced using purely natural methods, e.g., cold press. Also, look for the word “extra” on the label. This shows that the oil meets the highest quality of requirements for aroma and composition. The decisive factor here is the acid content of the oil. For extra virgin olive oil, the acid content can only be a maximum of 0.8 g per 100 ml of oil. The lower the acid content, the higher the quality. The acid content increases in old, overripe, decaying olives. Unfortunately, the acidity of the oil can only be determined in a laboratory and not by taste. When buying olive oil, look for “extra virgin olive oil.” Statements like “natural cold-pressed olive oil” have no value or significance. Omega 9 fatty acids can lower LDL levels, are anti-inflammatory, vasodilative, and can lower blood pressure.
- Polyunsaturated fats:
- OMEGA 3 vegetable fats (grapeseed oil, linseed oil, alba oil): Important for metabolic function. Note: It can take 3 to 6 months before the cells have stored enough Omega 3 fatty acids to regulate tissue hormones. The other fats (e.g., saturated fats or Omega 6 fatty acids) must be partially replaced from the cell beforehand so that they will no longer be used in the production of bad tissue hormones.
- OMEGA 6 fats (sunflower oil, corn oil, soya oil, and wheat germ oil): Reduce the consumption of these oils. Consuming high amounts of Omega 6 fatty acids has a negative influence on the tissue hormones. It hinders the uptake and use of Omega 3 fatty acids, makes blood lipids susceptible to oxidation, promotes inflammation, and hampers regeneration, especially after EMS training.
VITAMINS AND MINERALS
As EMS training is highly intensive, a balance of essential vitamins and minerals should be consumed after training. These requirements can be ideally covered by eating a balanced diet with lots of fruit and vegetables, certain types of fish, eggs as well as mineral-rich water. Usually, it’s only necessary to take supplements when your nutritional supply is low but can help if you don’t feel that you’re able to get these vitamins/minerals from food. Pay attention to the following vitamins and minerals when taking part in EMS training:
- Vitamin B1 and B12: Vitamin B nourishes the nerves and helps regulate metabolism. Good sources of B-rich foods are vegetables, yeast, nuts, and fruit. Regarding Vitamin B12: It is difficult to cover the body’s need for Vitamin B12 through vegetable products as it is mainly found in animal products. Foods rich in Vitamin B-12 are liver, fish, meat, eggs, algae, and ginger. It is essential for a fully functioning nervous system.
- Vitamin C: Important for the immune system, regeneration of the connective tissue, iron absorption, activating the immune system, and metabolism. Vitamin C is water-soluble, and a sufficient quantity should be consumed daily. Good sources are cherries, guava, black currants, parsley, kale, broccoli, peppers, and kiwi.
- Magnesium: Essential mineral and sufficient quantities must be consumed daily. Good sources of magnesium include mineral water, bananas, sunflower seed, sesame seeds, and nuts. Scatter a few sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, or nuts over salads or fruit (this gives a great sorted supply of magnesium, Vitamin B and Vitamin C).
- Zinc: An essential trace element for a functioning metabolism. Zinc plays a key role in the metabolism of sugar, fat, and protein. It also plays a key role in the construction of body cells and the immune system. Good sources of zinc are oysters, beef, nuts, pumpkin seeds, mushrooms, seafood, and certain kinds of green tea. The combination of Vitamin C-rich products has a positive effect on zinc uptake.
- Iron: Responsible for the transport of oxygen. Iron plays a critical role in blood formation, physical performance, and mental performance. We must consume iron daily as our bodies cannot produce it. Iron has a significant influence on the transmission of signals between muscles and nerves. When training with EMS, you must consume a sufficient amount of iron. Iron is also involved in the synthesis of dopamine. Dopamine is responsible for mood, attention, sleep, motor activity, and performance. A lack of iron means that the enzyme responsible for dopamine production does not work properly, leading to a dopamine deficit. This deficit negatively impacts attention, sleep, and motor activity. Those who exercise (especially women) need a higher quantity of iron. Iron absorption in the body is significantly increased by consuming Vitamin-C rich foods at the same time. Iron-rich foods are liver, fish, meat, parsley, egg yolks, chanterelle mushrooms, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, beetroot, cress, dates, figs, nuts, and raisins. It’s a good idea to combine these products with the Vitamin-C rich foods listed above.
INTERMITTENT FASTING FOR WEIGHT LOSS
Intermittent Fasting (IF) was once essential for survival because hunter-gatherers sometimes couldn’t find food for days at a time. Our bodies adapted to thrive in this cycle of fasting and eating.
IF helps burn body fat for energy, improves your sensitivity to insulin, improves metabolism, helps with muscle repair, reduces inflammation, and improves brain function.
The Most Popular Ways to Approach Intermittent Fasting are:
- 16/8: Eat during an 8-hr window, fast for the remaining 16 hrs.
- Eat-Stop-Eat: Fast for a 24-hr period, one or two days a week.
- 5:2: Eat normally for 5 days a week then restrict calories to 500-600 on 2 days.
I recommend the first bullet point until you become more familiar with how your body will react to IF. An easy way to start is to complete a large chunk of your fasting overnight (while you’re sleeping). For example, finish dinner at 8:00 pm. on Monday, fast overnight and into the next morning; eat your next meal at noon on Tuesday. You can start by doing this once a week, then gradually increase to 2 to 3 times per week. During my morning fast, I drink water/coffee/tea, but mostly water, until noon.