The mechanism of transformation of food in energy depends on several factors. Knowing main principles of this mechanism, it is possible to learn to distribute load and correctly to eat that will help to improve sports results considerably.
The sports dietology is constructed on understanding of how nutrients — fats, proteins and carbohydrates — will be transformed into energy, which is necessary for a body for fulfillment of physical exercises. These substances in an organism turn to energy in a kind of adenosine triphosphate. The energy necessary for work of muscles, an organism takes from split adenosine triphosphate. But all these three nutrients have the own mechanism of transformation in adenosine triphosphate.
Carbohydrates are a basic energy source for fulfillment of intensive exercises. Fats, on the contrary, ensure organism with energy for long, but not intensive exercises. Proteins do not supply an organism with energy. They basically are used as a construction material for fabrics.
Power exchange in an organism.
The organism cannot accumulate adenosine triphosphate (accumulated adenosine triphosphate is used by an organism within several seconds), therefore during physical activities the organism should make adenosine triphosphate constantly. There are two basic methods of transformation of nutrients in adenosine triphosphate by the organism: an aerobic metabolism (with oxygen) and anaerobic metabolism (without oxygen).
Adenosine triphosphate into phosphocreatine is anaerobic way of metabolism.
Adenosine triphosphate – phosphocreatine is the metabolism way (sometimes named phosphatic system) ensures an organism with energy within 10 seconds, and is used for short-term intensive loads, such as, for example, hundred-meter sprint. In this case oxygen is not necessary for organism for production of adenosine triphosphate. At first it uses all adenosine triphosphate, accumulated in muscles (within 2-3 seconds), then starts to use phosphocreatine for adenosine triphosphate synthesis. When the stock of phosphocreatine runs out (it occurs in 6-8 seconds), the organism passes again to adenosine triphosphate synthesis in aerobic or anaerobic way.
Anaerobic metabolism — glycolysis.
The anaerobic metabolism, or glycolysis, synthesizes adenosine triphosphate only from carbohydrates. A by-product of such metabolism is lactic acid. At glycolysis energy is allocated as a result of partial splitting of glucose, and oxygen for this purpose is not required. The anaerobic metabolism makes energy for short-term, intensive physical activities, lasting not more than several minutes. In some minutes the accumulated lactic acid reaches a certain limit, so-called lactate threshold, and thus the person feels weariness, a pain and burning in muscles.
The aerobic metabolism produces energy for long physical activities. For adenosine triphosphate synthesis from nutrients — proteins, fats and carbohydrates — is used oxygen. This way is slower, than anaerobic, in it is involved the system of blood circulation, supplying working muscles by oxygen at that time when occurs adenosine triphosphate synthesis. The aerobic metabolism basically is used during long physical activities of small intensity.
During trainings aerobic and anaerobic metabolism replace one another. In the training beginning, adenosine triphosphate is produced under the scheme of anaerobic metabolism. As breath and pulse become frequent, organism gets more oxygen, and the organism passes to aerobic type of a metabolism. Under this scheme the organism continues to work until will reach lactate threshold. When this limit is reached, oxygen does not arrive in an organism quickly enough for adenosine triphosphate synthesis, therefore again “joins” anaerobic metabolism. But this mechanism is considered for the short period of time; therefore it is necessary for sportsman to reduce intensity of exercise to prevent formation of lactic acid.
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