How should a runner eat?

The main rule that should be followed by runners is the regular consumption of meals in moderate amounts. The body is not able to digest a large portion of food at once, and what remains is transformed into adipose tissue. For this reason, carbohydrates should be regularly refilled, so as to avoid the appearance of a strong feeling of hunger.


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Dietitian  recommends in the diet of active people to eat three main meals with a similar caloric value – breakfast and supper should account for about 25% of the daily requirement, and lunch 30%. The rest should be supplemented with additional snacks – however, it is important that they are not chips or sweets. A myth overthrown by an expert is the one that talks about avoiding carbohydrates. The body needs carbohydrates, especially after intensive training to be able to regenerate. In addition, dietitian reminds that for a few hours after training the metabolism works faster, so that everything we eat is transformed into energy reserves, not fat tissue. The dietician also responds to the question of which are still ongoing disputes in the runners’ environment, namely whether you can run on an empty stomach. He emphasizes that mid-intensity training may take place before breakfast, as long as we remember about eating dinner the previous day, otherwise deficiencies in glycogen in the brain and muscles may occur, and training may turn out to be unpleasant. 

The nutritionist also answers questions about hydration of the body. He recommends to be guided mainly by the feeling of thirst, but not to extinguish him with beer, which by the alcohol content dehydrates the body and inhibits its regeneration. Also, supplements and L-carnitine are not recommended, as long as the runner feeds himself healthy and takes care of the daily portion of vegetables and fruits on his menu. 

At the end, dietitian reminds that no diet is good for everyone, so you should be guided by common sense and a pyramid of healthy nutrition, as well as listen to the body’s needs, and the most important for the runner is to provide the body with the right amount of calories. 


You can read also: 10 nutrition principles that will change your life


What sport for whom?

Sport has many positive effects on our health and well-being. During physical activity, we not only oxidize, strengthen muscles and joints and improve our mood. We feel and look better.
How to choose the most suitable type of sport for you? 


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In order for sport to enjoy and positively affect our health and well-being, we must choose that it not only be pleasant to us, but above all, it does not hurt. Individual types of sports force specific parts of muscles and joints to work, so choosing a sport for yourself is worth having in mind your tastes and ailments. Recreational exercise not only should not be a chore, causing frustration, but also can not be a source of injury or deterioration of our health. In addition, it is worth adapting it to our expectations and possibilities. Do we want to practice to lose weight or maintain a slim figure? Or maybe sport is to be a form of entertainment for us or an occasion for socializing? Outdoors or under the roof? We suggest what kind of sport to choose! 

First of all, let us answer the basic questions that help clarify our preferences regarding physical activity 

1. Do you prefer to practice outdoors or indoors? 

2. Do you like individual or group sports? 

3. Do you want to practice recreation to lose weight, or maybe to sculpt muscles? 

4. Do you prefer static or dynamic sports? 

5. Do you have a chronic illness or have you had injuries that affect your fitness? 

Once you answer the above questions, it will be easier for you to choose the type of physical activity that is right for you. Below you will find factual descriptions of the most popular types of recreational sports. You will find out what sport is suitable for the type of personality, motivation, who should beware of it and how many calories you will burn when practicing a given sport. 


Recreational swimming does not require special training or equipment. It is enough to have a good physical condition and, of course, be able to swim. This form of physical exercise has many advantages and is extremely pleasant. Regular swimming keeps the body in a good shape, increases the capacity of the respiratory system and perfectly relaxes. 

Swimming is also recommended for people with various types of movement dysfunctions, it is often one of the elements of effective rehabilitation, which is often recommended when returning to the form after various types of injuries. However, when you want to use the healing properties of swimming, be sure to consult with your doctor or physiotherapist beforehand. 

For whom? 

Swimming is recommended for both children and adolescents, especially during the period of intense growth, due to the positive impact of the spine and posture. However, even women who are pregnant and seniors can benefit from swimming pools equally well, for whom a very low level of training in water will be a great relaxation. Swimming is an excellent sport for both those who expect a lot of physical activity and for less enthusiastic practitioners. And if from the activity in the pool we expect something more than swimming, let’s put on aqua aerobic! 

How many calories are burned while swimming? 

An hour of intense swimming is a loss of around 600 calories. 


Riding on two wheels is a sport that we can successfully grow from spring to autumn. It does not require any special physical condition or large financial outlays. All you need is an efficient bike, a comfortable outfit and good intentions to quickly convince you of the undoubted advantages of regular pedaling! 

For whom? 

For anyone who enjoys outdoor activities. The bike can be both a form of recreation and transport. When the aura externally favors it, it is worth giving up on commuting to work by car for a healthy and ecological bike ride. Riding a bicycle is recommended for all lovers of dynamic sports, both those who like loneliness and sports companions. After a medical consultation, the bike is often recommended for people with degenerations of the spine and knee and hip joints. The bike is also a great way to take care of your condition and health, because it can be one of the effective elements of prevention of hypertension and diseases of the circulatory system. It will also be appreciated by those who care about losing a few pounds and strengthening and modeling the muscles (especially the lower parts of the body). 

How many calories are burned while cycling?

An hour of cycling is a loss of around 600-800 calories. 


Running or jogging is the most economical and one of the most-chosen sports. The advantages of jogging include oxygenation and better performance of the body, prevention of cardiovascular disease, depression, cancer or diabetes, support of the slimming process, and, if we run outdoors, perfect relaxation and de-stressing. In addition, running is an extremely natural sport, easily coming to most people. 

For whom? 

Running is recommended for people of all ages, with different physical condition. Tranquil jogging can be successfully even for seniors! It is important to take reasonable steps towards jogging and gradually increase distances, running speed and difficulty of the training route. And attention! Remember about the right footwear and a short warm-up, this will protect our joints against possible injuries. 

How many calories burns while running? 

An hour of jogging is a loss of about 800 calories. 


Fashionable fitness is a great proposition for all those who like to be on time, try new products and do not have a terrible exercise in a large group of other trainers. The offerings of fitness clubs burst at the seams, suggesting different types of activities – more or less dynamic, with music, in the form of dance, with instruments etc. Everyone will find something for himself! And the big advantage of this type of activities is primarily training with a professional instructor, thanks to which we will not lack motivation, and we will be calm about safety during the exercises. 

For whom? 

For all those who like classes in groups who want to lose a few kilos or model their figure.Regular fitness training will soon bring effects in the form of a firmer, slimmer body, better frame of mind and increased vitality and energy! 

How many calories are burned during fitness?

Depending on the type of fitness, the hour of training is a loss of up to 550 calories. 


I speak and write a lot about the benefits of yoga. First of all, yoga positively affects not only our condition, but also health and well-being. It’s best to start training under the supervision of an instructor, but we may as well try to practice at home, assisting with instruction from books, DVDs or the internet. To practice yoga, you will need a comfortable sports outfit, exercise mat and ankle and straps (useful when performing certain items). 

For whom? 

The greatest advantage of yoga is its versatility! Yoga can be successfully practiced by everyone, including people with various joint ailments, seniors and even pregnant women. However, before yoga session, it is important to report yoga to any instructor, then it will adapt the training to our needs. Yoga is a perfect proposition for those who care for a slimmer, more flexible body as well as relaxation and inner quietness. Some yoga schools offer classes combined with relaxation techniques or meditation. 

How many calories burns during yoga? 

An hour yoga session is a loss of about 200 to 400 calories depending on the level of advancement.


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Counting calories – how to do it effectively?

It’s worth counting calories 

Calorie (and indeed a kilocalorie) is a unit of energy. As some readers may remember from physics lessons in high school, energy (action) and matter (objects) are interchangeable. A given amount of energy can be transformed into a given amount of matter and vice versa. Simply put, the energy coming from food, or the dose of calories, is transformed into the matter of the body (blood, muscle, fat, bones and so on). Then the matter back becomes energy and powers the biological functions of the body, such as muscle spasms. So if the number of calories taken with food is greater than the number of calories consumed by biological functions, the body acquires mass (or matter), and if the amount of energy burned exceeds the amount of energy stored in the form of matter – skinny. 


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What is simple in theory can pose difficulties in practice. Counting calories to control body weight is problematic for two reasons. First of all, most people think that it is not worth spending so much time and effort on arduous calculations. Secondly, home methods are quite inaccurate. 

Nevertheless, thanks to recent achievements, counting calories has become easier. Internet tools, such as applications on the TrainingPeaks website, contributed to the improvement of the process. In addition, the researchers found that calculating the energy value on their own does not have to meet the criterion of 100- or even 95-percent accuracy to be helpful. This is due to the fact of the control activity itself, resulting in increased awareness. People counting calories have more knowledge about food and automatically start eating better. They do not have to make special efforts to do this, but if they do, they gain even more. 

Calculation of the energy value of food plays a similar role to the starter engine, thanks to which the space shuttle gets off the ground and gains the acceleration needed to overcome the strong gravitational field produced by our planet. But at some height the gravity pulls down. The engine is rejected and the shuttle can orbit without additional propulsion. In an analogous way, counting calories helps determine what, in what quantities and how often you should eat to achieve the start weight. Once this information is obtained, it is no longer needed and you can maintain a constant weight, observing the eating habits developed thanks to the initial analysis of the energy value of consumed products. 

Two ways to count calories 

There are two ways to count traditional and modern calories. The first is to write information from food product labels and to explore the energy value of non-prepacked food in such sources as, for example, books with calorie tables. To do this accurately, take portions into account. Suppose we have breakfast consisting of a bowl of Cheerios flakes with skimmed milk. According to the label, the portion of flakes is 110 kilocalories, and a glass of milk – 86. But morning hunger orders to eat a large bowl of Cheerios, so it is possible that a glass of milk will receive one and a half servings of flakes (normal proportions of about ¾ cup of milk per portion of flakes). As the example shows, care in counting calories requires – if necessary – to measure or weigh portions, not assume that we eat and drink in accordance with the manufacturer’s measurements. 


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Heart rate monitor – how it was made?

Heart monitoring has a long history in endurance sports. Long before the construction of electronic devices, endurance athletes realized that the pace of their heartbeats is inextricably linked to the effort, and therefore with sports results. It was obvious. When they practiced with a lot of effort, they felt their heart beat faster. As they slowed down, the heart worked much more slowly. 


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An old method of measuring the pulse before the era of the heart rate monitor 

During exercise, endurance athletes checked their wrist or neck, but to do this they had to slow down or stop completely. Of course, when the intensity of effort decreases, the heart beats slower and the heart rate drops. The longer they stood and kept their fingers on the neck or wrist, the lower their heart rate. Counting for a minute was completely pointless. Therefore, to get the correct number, the player had to count only for 10 seconds, so that the heart rate would not slow down too much. Then the result multiplied by 6, which gave the approximate value of the pulse, very inaccurate. Unfortunately, research has shown that this method of calculating the heart rate led to an error of at least 9 beats per minute. Subsequent tests showed errors up to 17 beats per minute. But what else could athletes do? 

It became clear to trainers and athletes that this way of calculating the heart rate is too inaccurate, and the medical equipment designed to measure the pulse was too expensive and too large to be carried. A small, inexpensive device was needed that would check the pulse during exercise and not during rest. 

Two breakthroughs 

In the 1970s, there were two breakthroughs. At the beginning of this decade, the Australian sport psychologist, and later also the world-famous swimming coach, Dr. Robert Treffene, began to deal with heart rate measurements. Soon, he constructed a pocket monitor with electrodes and cables, with which the pool trainer could check his swimmers’ heartbeats as soon as they finished swimming and stopped at the pool wall. 

The second breakthrough came in 1977. Seppo Säynäjäkangas (pronounced say-nayya-kong-as), a 33-year-old electronics professor at the University of Oulu, on the west coast of Finland, was an avid skier, like many Finns. In 1976, he wanted to help a local ski coach, a frustrated lack of ability to monitor the pulse of his novice athletes. The professor invented a heart rate monitor with batteries placed on the fingertips. He knew that he was on the trail of something big, when the National Ski National Team of Finland wanted to use this device, so in 1977 he founded the company Polar Electro Oy. 

The first heart rate monitor 

A year later, Polar introduced the first Tunturi Pulser pulse. It was a heart rate monitor connected by cables to the chest band. Five years later, in 1983, Polar presented the first wireless heart rate monitor, using an electric field for data transfer – Sport Tester PE 2000. The next year, the company released a device with a computer interface – Sport Tester PE 3000. The era of modern training has come. 

Modern training with a heart rate monitor 

Surprisingly, trainers and athletes at first approached the heart rate monitor very cautiously. But in 1984 something happened that mastered the covers of all magazines dealing with endurance sports. This year, Francesco Moser, an Italian cyclist, beat Belgian Eddie Merckks’ record in an hour-long ride – the distance a cyclist can cover in one hour while driving alone on the track. The amazing Merckks record – 49,431 km was established in 1976 and was considered unbeatable. In the end, Merckx was considered the greatest rider of all time. Many great athletes tried to break his record, but it failed. Moser was considered a decent cyclist, but he was not the best, and he was approaching the end of his career. But in Mexico, on a cold January day in 1984, within an hour Moser rode 51.115 km – an entire 3 percent more. 

Interesting in the case of the Moser record was how he trained. Until then, the training of cyclists was based strictly on the well-being. Most of the training took place in groups, thanks to which individual riders could mobilize each other for better results. Instead of following the tradition, Moser trained under his trainings preparing for hour-driving under the supervision of the Italian doctor Francesco Conconi. Dr. Conocni, using the Säynäjäkangas pulse during the race, made an interesting discovery. When, after training on the treadmill, during which he ran faster and faster with each lap, he created a graph showing the pace and heart rate, he noticed something that he considered an intriguing phenomenon. The dots on the graph were connected by a solid line. The line went up from the lower left corner of the chart to the upper right. He expected it. However, at the top, something interesting happened on the right – the line was breaking down a bit. Conocni recognized that the point of refraction is an anaerobic threshold (later studies have questioned this discovery). This is how Conconi’s test was born. 

Conconi knew that a man could keep his effort on the anaerobic threshold (AT – anaerobic threshold) for about an hour. When Moser reported to him, looking for tips on how to train to break the record, the doctor already knew how to prepare it – using the heart rate monitor and performing the Conconi test to determine the anaerobic threshold and then train at the determined pulse rate. It worked. 

The confusion that Moser and Conconi introduced caused that riders, runners, swimmers, skiers and other strength athletes around the world decided to try out training using heart monitors. Conconi’s test has been described and praised in many journals, in different languages ​​and in different time zones. A new training method has been born. 


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Running or going for health?

Researchers compared 33 060 runners and 15945 walkers to investigate the effect of differences in exercise type and intensity on CHD risk factors. The initial expenditure (METhr / day) was compared with the hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes and coronary artery disease detected by the physician during the 6.2 years of follow-up. 


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Running has reduced the risk 

One MET determines the consumption of one kilocalorie of energy for one kilogram of body weight in one hour of rest (quiet sitting) (kcal / kg / h) and the number of MET means how many times more energy is consumed during exercise compared to the energy spent in rest time. Very slow walk (<3 km / h) is a small physical activity, referred to as 2 MET, free walk (3 km / h) – 2.5 MET. A moderate level of physical activity is in the 3-6 MET range, eg a fast walk (6 km / h) – 3 MET, recreational skiing – 5 MET, cycling at 15-18 km / h or medium intensity classes fitness – 6 MET. Intense physical activity is a 7-12 MET energy expenditure, e.g. tennis (singles) or running at 8 km / h – 8 MET, swimming (crawl) – 10 MET, running (12 km / h) – 12 MET. 

The application of running does not bring significantly higher results compared to walking in the case of risk of diabetes or coronary heart disease, while walking has been more effective in the case of hypertension and hypercholesterolemia. It is therefore best to combine both forms of activity. 


You can read also: How to run properly


Run round the year!

The jogging season is slowly ending.However, the autumn weather does not necessarily mean having to give up your favorite form of physical activity.Cross-country training can be moved to the roof.We check whether the treadmill can be an effective replacement for jogging outdoors.The Poles were crazy about running a few years ago.This is proved not only by the growing number of marathon participants, but also by crowds of runners in city parks.Jogging, however, is a seasonal fashion.


You should read it: How to run properly


The autumn weather is not conducive to the systematic practice of outdoor sports.Well, how can you exercise here every day, when the window is covered by rain, mud and lower and lower temperatures?However, if we have been running intensely for the last few months, it is certainly not worth suspending trainings because of a bad weather.A good alternative is treadmills, which can be used at home or in the gym.Thanks to this, running training can be performed throughout the year.

Running on the tape

– Having your own treadmill allows you to play sports anytime.However, it is worth remembering that it is difficult to compare the results of training on a treadmill with results from the terrain.The lack of terrain unevenness, air resistance and the speed set rigidly make such running easier simply

The specificity of running on the treadmill also assumes a slightly different body position, and thus also the way the individual muscles are used.During this training, the walking belt moves, and we stay in the same position.It is therefore the reverse of the classic race in which we must move our body forward.Consequently, the field run is much more exhausting for the muscles of the entire body.


Check also: Supplements for runners


Jogging for the persistent

Exercises on the treadmill and jogging course can not be compared at all levels.The basic is to travel the route not on the tape, surrounded by concrete walls, but among nature.The treadmill is not slow for us to run an unknown path or get pleasure in admiring the landscapes.

When using jogging as aerobic training, remember that our body burns fat best within 60-70 percent.maximum heart rate.Sprint will not result in a dream figure – to achieve this goal you should run long and slow.The intensity of effort can be measured with the help of the heart rate monitor not only for the calories burned but also the length of the route covered.- There are many such devices on the market.Depending on the precision of the measurement and additional functions, the price range can be as much as one thousand zlotys.The simplest heart rate monitors take heart rate measurements when you put your finger on the sensor.Much more precise devices, however, are equipped with a sensor placed on the chest

New on the market are speed sensors that are mounted on shoe laces.This small device will measure our speed, distance traveled and improve the technique of running.

The decision is yours

There is no doubt, however, that both forms of running give very good training results, strengthen muscles and allow you to burn unnecessary calories.The choice of the treadmill is a definite time saving.Every time of day (and night!) Is suitable for training.It is worth to be aware, however, that treadmill training differs from that performed in natural conditions.The treadmill is a great way to burn unnecessary body fat, but it certainly does not fully replace running training.


You can read also: Running or cycling – what burns more fat?