Hello fellow climbers,
In today's blog post we will be focusing on some basic concepts on muscle energy systems and how they relate to climbing. In order to fully understand how to eat better and perform better, we first must have a basic understanding of how the body uses food for energy.
To start we will look at the muscles primary energy source, ATP or Adenosine Triphosphate. ATP is used to store and transport energy in the muscles cells. ATP is not stored in large amounts and must be produced consistently throughout muscle contraction.
There are 3 basic ways our muscles produce ATP:
- Creatine phosphate
- Cellular respiration
Creatine Phosphate (Anaerobic):
Creatine phosphate is the process of utilizing creatine phosphate to create ATP. It is the most readily available form of energy for the muscles and provides the highest output of strength and performance. The down side to this process is that it can only provide energy for about 8 to 10 seconds. In climbing we utilize this form of energy when we require bursts of power or strength. For example, bouldering and speed climbing. Both in dynamic movements and static high intensity movements.
Glycosis is the process of converting glucose (carbohydrates) to ATP. This process requires more time to produce ATP so it provides energy at a slower rate. This is when you start to feel like you are slowing down or getting pumped. Glycosis does not require oxygen and can provide about 90 seconds of energy, Boulderers will primarily stay in this stage for the duration of the climb.
Cellular Respiration (Aerobic):
Cellular respiration is the process of breaking down glucose (carbohydrates), with the introduction of oxygen, to produce ATP. This process takes the longest to produce ATP and in turn provides even less performance. This process can provide ATP for several hours as long as the muscle is supplied with glucose. Lead climbers will experience this stage much more frequently.
The best way to visualize these 3 processes is to think of a sprinter running till they can't run anymore. For about 8 to 10 seconds of going all out their muscles are in the creatine phosphate stage, lots of power and covering the most distance in a short period of time. After the 10 seconds has past, their muscles will enter the glycosis stage. For about 90 seconds they will slowly decline in speed and their breathing will become a little heavier. Then anywhere from 90 seconds till they collapse their muscles will be in the cellular respiration stage. Breathing becomes very heavy, they really slow down and the exercise now becomes very labored.
How to best produce ATP:
Now that you know the basics of how our muscles generate energy, you can work on molding your diet to your specific needs. Our Climber Pre-Workout + ensures your muscles are properly fueled and helps them perform at their highest output, which will minimize those high gravity days. Our specific blend of ingredients was meticulously chosen to help climbers increase power and endurance, while reducing inflammation. This unique pre-workout will help you climb harder, train longer and feel better, every session.
With our products, proper food choices, and lots of water, you will be more prepared to tackle your next climb, competition, or training session! Work hard, stay with it and the results will come.
If you have any questions or would like to say hi you can in the comment section below. I hope this post will help you conquer your future climbing goals and make eating for climbing a little easier.
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