Priyanka Bagai is a Sports Nutritionist and Fitness Coach at Fuel Your Transformation. A pacer with the Nike Run Club, Priyanka has been running the half marathon for the past 7 years, and will be running the full marathon for the first time in January 2018.
So how does a Sports Nutritionist herself manage to pack her work schedule, rigorous training routine, balanced diet and some personal time all into a day? We spoke to Priyanka to find out.
Here’s what a typical day in Priyanka’s life looks like!
The Morning Routine
5:00 am. Wakes up and has black coffee with 1 teaspoon of coconut oil (which contains a type of fat called medium chain triglycerides that provides a quick source of energy), and an apple. Adds in a toast with peanut butter on heavy training days.
6:45 am. Goes for a 7 km run.
8:30 am. Drinks a protein smoothie made up of whey protein, oats, almond milk and some pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Getting sufficient protein after a workout helps build muscle, while the oat’s carbohydrates will replenish her stores of glycogen (a form of energy storage in our muscles). The addition of nuts provides fats, delivering a complete meal within the smoothie.
The Work Schedule
Between Priyanka’s client-training hours and her own exercise routine, Priyanka makes it a point to take breaks to replenish the nutrients she would have lost during the workouts.
Here’s how her schedule is broken up-
8:30 to 11: 30 am. Trains her clients.
11:45 am. Preworkout snack for carbohydrates and protein: sweet potatoes (100 grams) and eggs (3 whites, 1 yolk).
12 to 1 pm. Does weight training. She has BCAAs (Branched Chain Amino Acids) with 1 litre of water during her workout, to aid the muscle-building process. She ends her workout with half a scoop of protein to once again help recovery.
2: 30 pm. Lunchtime, usually with brown rice (100 grams), chicken (100 grams, cooked in minimal oil) and a big bowl of green vegetables. Priyanka generally includes beetroots with this meal, to help boost her haemoglobin levels.
3:30 pm to 8 pm. Trains her clients.
5 pm. Breaks for boiled sweet potato (100 grams) with black salt and a glass of 1 scoop protein.
7 pm. Breaks for a snack consisting of 10 almonds and 2 walnuts.
Post Work Hours
8:30 pm. Drinks a bowl of vegetable soup.
8:45 pm. Dinner time, usually with fish (100 grams) and a bowl of vegetables. Adds a bowl of sprouts to her meal for additional carbohydrates and protein, if her day involved hard training.
10:30 pm. Drinks some green tea, which is rich in antioxidants and helps protect us from free radical damage.
11 pm. Goes to bed.
Her Supplements Routine
Even though Priyanka follows a healthy, well-balanced diet, she also takes nutritional supplements to help her body keep up with her intense workout schedule.
Morning: 1 calcium+ 1 vitamin D (2000 IU) supplement
Post breakfast: 1 multivitamin
Post weight training: 1 vitamin C (1000 mg) and 1 vitamin E (400 mg), to replenish the body’s antioxidants.
Post lunch: 1 fish oil capsule, for a high dose of omega 3 fats
Post dinner: 1 fish oil capsule once again
Before bed: 1 vitamin C (1000 mg) and 1 vitamin E (400 mg)
When training for the marathon, Priyanka adds the following supplements to her routine:
L-carnitine (500 mg), for energy: Before her workout and after dinner
L-Glu (5 g), for muscle recovery: With her protein shake, twice daily
In Her Spare Time
Here’s how Priyanka manages to find time to wind down and take a break from her work routine.
- Goes for a midweek movie
- Dines out once a week
- Goes to a bar once a week, over the weekend
- Watches Netflix before going to bed (recently saw ‘Stranger Things’)
- Being Buddhist, occasionally reads about Buddhism before bedtime
Her Tips for Marathon Runners
- It’s important to do strength training in order to increase muscle mass
- Always stretch before and after running
- Hydrate! “I drink 4 to 4.5 litres of water a day.”
- Eat a balanced diet. “You need the carbs and the fats, too!”
- Sleep for at least 7 hours. “Your body needs to recover.”
- Don’t compete with others; go with your own stamina and capacity. “Keep it slow, gradual and consistent.”