Dr Nic Gill, low carb, low sugar and the, All Blacks
I wrote this little piece up for Facebook, and its ended up viral – mainly because the All Blacks won the World Cup. So here’s more permanent version. Enjoy.
Many of you might know that we are in the final stages of getting our new book “What The Fat? Sports Performance” ready for publishing. It’s all about getting Leaner, Fitter, Faster on Low-Carb, Healthy-Fat. We show you how to switch on fat burning and unlock your potential in a sporting and exercise context.
We’ve just put the E book up for pre-order on Amazon.
We have profiled 10 athletes – from Olympic to World champions – looking closely at what they eat and how they train. This week we want to start showing you a few of these profiles. Because we are in the middle of the 2015 Rugby World Cup, we thought we’d start with the strength and conditioning coach for the NEW ZEALAND ALL BLACKS; Dr Nic Gill.
Dr Nicholas Gill is a super high achiever. He’s extremely well qualified and credentialed in applied strength and conditioning. In Southern Hemisphere professional sport it doesn’t get any bigger than All Black’s rugby. He’s been with them as world champions and as the current world number 1 ranked team for the last four years.
Not only does he have it together academically (he supervises doctoral and master’s students at AUT), and professionally, but he also gives Ironman triathlon racing a crack. He’s pretty competitive and does it all fat-adapted on LCHF.
Check out what he has to say about #LCHF working for him in the athlete world below.
Athlete profile: Nicholas Gill
Occupation(s): Strength and conditioning coach New Zealand All Blacks rugby, gym owner, Associate Professor AUT Sports Performance Research Institute.
Sports: Elite rugby strength and conditioning coaching (All Blacks), Triathlon – Ironman last two years on LCHF with added carbs during event 9.57 and 9.51 aiming to go under 9.30 next time (personal challenges).
Nic’s favourite breakfast: Poached eggs!
What Nic has to say on changing his diet:
“Two and a half years ago I started experimenting with the Warrior diet based on the book ‘The Warrior Diet: Switch on Your Biological Powerhouse for High Energy, Explosive Strength, and a Leaner, Harder Body’ by Ori Hormekler. The book appealed to me, and it meant eating pretty much whatever I wanted but in a retracted eating window at the end of the day. It’s based on primal/paleo and anthropological principals.
“I also noticed that I was often eating not because I was hungry but because of habit. I think that’s a big one for people to understand – habit not hunger driving your eating.
“After a while I discovered that the more fat I ate at night the less hungry I felt the next day and I was able to control the cravings and just generally feel better. The warrior diet transformed into LCHF with some intermittent fasting thrown in. That’s really the best diet for me. The advantages of metabolic flexibility are huge. I’m not forced to eat because I’m hungry. And in the rush of work and life I can choose to eat when I want to, not when I need to.”
“That’s about it for me. I stay high on fat, and low on carbs pretty much the whole time, except in triathlons where I have some carbs. I eat whole healthy foods. The only thing I avoid is milk. It upsets my stomach, so I’ve replaced it with cream.”
On the All Black’s nutrition environment;
“The movie ‘The Sugar Film’ has influenced the players quite a lot I think. Most of the guys now understand that we need to get the sugar out. We’ve come a long way. I would say we are in a low-sugar environment. That’s a big change. We now have nuts on the sideline after training, not lollies. I wouldn’t say we’ve made it all the way to high fat, but we have healthy fat on hand when we need it. We (the team) go through 6-7 tins of coconut oil a week. We travel with peanut butter and nut butters for the guys to use in smoothies and wherever else it can fit in”.
“I’d say most professional sports teams are now at least low sugar, lower to low carb. That’s not always high fat, but its healthy fats. Nutrition for sport is really changing fast.”