How to Handle Portion Control When Increasing Your Activity Level | STACK
X

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

How to Control Portions When Increasing Activity Level

April 22, 2013 | Jessica Crandall

Must See Nutrition Videos

Transitioning from the off-season to in-season can be particularly difficult for athletes trying to lose weight or tone up. Even a slight increase in physical activity can cause athletes to eat larger portions at meal time. (Check out the STACK workout page for fitness inspiration.)

This tendency can quickly negate all of the hard work you did in the off-season. Although you're burning calories during conditioning, they can easily be put back (and more) in one extended table sitting. Refueling your body after a workout is important. But rather than loading up on unnecessary calories, reach for nutrient-dense foods instead of calorically-dense ones. The former help control your appetite and prevent you from going back for seconds. Smaller portions of nutritious foods will tide you over for longer periods of time, while providing you with the fuel you need to sustain your workout routines.

Take charge of your portions in order to prevent overeating, and get the most out of your meals.

Portion Control Tips

Large portion sizes and lack of self-control have been long-standing barriers to achieving physical performance goals. We know all too well about portion distortion and super-sized meals. They have crept in to our everyday existence. So how can we keep tabs on how much we are consuming when we are working towards a specific goal or just maintaining a healthy lifestyle?

Become familiar with serving sizes

At home, use measuring cups when portioning out your food. This will help you get an idea of how much you are actually consuming and allow you to recognize the times when you may be doubling down. (Use common sports equipment to measure: Learn Portion Control.)

Use smaller plates and glasses

Giant plates and drinking glasses have tricked us into thinking that the amounts we are eating and drinking are appropriate. Try eating from a smaller plate, around nine inches in diameter instead of 12. Drink higher-calorie beverages from a smaller glass.

Avoid eating foods straight from the bag or container

When we don't keep a mindful eye on what we are ingesting, it's hard to pinpoint how much we are taking in. Pre-portioning our snacks and meals before digging in can help us avoid unconsciously overeating in the long run.

Check in with a registered dietitian

This can be beneficial to your health and help you reach your health-related goals. An RD can assist with meal planning, suggest exercise-fueling foods, offer a nutrition prescription that is right for your individual needs, and much more. Sometimes a little guidance can be beneficial to your health beyond belief.

Photo: managemylife.com

Jessica Crandall
- Jessica Crandall is the general manager of Denver Wellness and Nutrition Center-Sodexo, where she supervises a team of six dietitians who focus on fulfilling the...
Jessica Crandall
- Jessica Crandall is the general manager of Denver Wellness and Nutrition Center-Sodexo, where she supervises a team of six dietitians who focus on fulfilling the...
Must See
Skylar Diggins Attacks the Off-Season On and Off the Court
Views: 3,962,253
Margus Hunt Benches 385 Pounds for Five Reps
Views: 19,188,213
Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night
Views: 3,930,693

Featured Videos

Tim Tebow's NFL Off-Season Workout Views: 135,407
Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Views: 14,586
Elite Performance With Mike Boyle: Train the Core While Standing Views: 311,611
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Patrick Willis' Homegrown Off-Season Workout
Views: 1,221,618
STACK Fitness Weekly: How To Do a Muscle-Up
Views: 778,105
How Greg Nixon Gets More 'Twerk' on the Track
Views: 950,576
Corey White's Off-Season Guide to Making Plays
Views: 1,396,869
Abby Wambach Will Do Whatever It Takes
Views: 2,814,024

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

4 'Bad Foods' That Might be Good for You

As nutritionists, we learned in Nutrition 101 that unsaturated fats are the "good" fats whereas saturated fats are the "bad" ones. For years we were...

Are You Eating Too Much Protein?

Healthy Makeovers for 3 Classic Meals

7 Foods That Are Ruining Your Workouts

The Boston Cannons'

You Should Eat the Peel of These 12 Fruits and Vegetables

6 Eating Mistakes That Undo Your Workouts

5 Foods That Are Stunningly High in Sodium

10 Easy Ways to Eat Real Food

11 Food Services That Deliver Ready-Made Nutritious Meals

Why You Need Dietary Fiber

5 Non-Boring Ways To Eat Chicken

Small Change, Big Difference: 5 Foods You Should Buy Organic

Where the Paleo Diet Falls Short

Spice Up Your Healthy Cooking With These Lively Combos

Salad Showdown: Which Greens Are the Healthiest?

The 6 Worst Foods for Athletes

Healthy Eating at Restaurants: Decoding a Diner Menu

12 Foods Every Athlete Should Eat

6 Healthy Foods You're Overeating

5 Ways to Fuel Your Early Morning Workout

9 Athlete-Approved Peanut Butter Sandwiches

5 Nutritional Power Combos for Athletes

Vegetarian Athlete Tips: Olympic Swimmer Kate Ziegler

Living Near Fast Food Could Increase Your Odds of Obesity

The Healthiest (And Unhealthiest) Ways to Eat Chicken

5 'Healthy' Side Dishes That Are Worse Than French Fries

Load Up on These Foods at Your Backyard Barbecue

A Sneaky Food Additive Athletes Should Avoid

5 'Good Foods' That Might Be Bad for You

Healthy (and Unhealthy) BBQ Ideas For Athletes

3 Fruits and 3 Vegetables Athletes Must Eat

5 Healthy Foods That Got a Bad Rap

The Best Foods for Digestive Health

The Cheat Meal Day: Why It's Not So Smart

The Case for Red Meat

Terrible Toppings: The 5 Worst Things We Put on Food

How to Eat Organic Without Breaking the Bank

10 Athlete-Approved, High-Protein Healthy Cereals

The Grain Guide: How and Why to Use 8 Healthy Whole Grains

Brown Rice vs. White Rice: Does It Really Matter?

5 Delicious Ways to Make Junk Food Less Junky

How Undereating Can Make You Gain Weight

Fuel Up Fast With 4 Smoothies From the New York Giants

STUDY: Eat More Fruits and Veggies, Live (Almost) Forever

5 Protein-Packed Recovery Shakes

5 Ways Junk Food Can Mess With Your Head

How to Deal With Your Sugar Cravings

How Friends and Family Affect Your Food Choices