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Spartan diet to increase muscles. A gladiator’s body?

by Georgia Ede
Published: Last Updated on

When you hear about the Spartan diet, the image of the Spartans from the movies comes to mind, with very defined, athletic, very muscular bodies and you wonder what did these people eat to have so much energy to withstand those battles that did they last for hours?

There are numerous studies in this regard but they do not coincide in certain aspects of the diet of the Spartans, we are going to analyze what diet the Spartan soldiers ate.

Generally, it is believed that the Spartans fed on protein from the meats they consumed, but nothing is further from the truth, the Spartans basically fed on carbohydrates that provided them with energy for tough battles.

The Spartans ate little

There are studies that affirm that the Spartan soldiers were vegetarians and that they carried out poor nutrition, that in some cases there were even problems of being overweight, although it seems incredible and we have the image of strongly muscled soldiers with large arms, trapezius and well defined quadriceps.

According to the studies that have been carried out through bone analysis that analyze the trace elements and minerals present in the bones, they conclude that they were fed on cereals, mainly wheat and barley ; fruits , legumes and some vegetables .

The Spartans are said to have consumed a drink of plant ash , which provided them with nutrients to quickly restore their bones and muscles after battles.

We can say that the Spartans ate little , hence the expression of making a Spartan diet, it is a poor diet that involves a lot of sacrifice .

What should I eat to achieve a Spartan body?

Based on what we now know about food and nutrition, we have designed a diet that allows you to develop your muscles to achieve a Spartan body . You must bear in mind that a very muscular and defined body is not achieved only with food, but requires constant physical training.

In the same way, by controlling the diet we make it easier for the body to develop naturally, but we must take into account the exercise load to be carried out so as not to have overweight problems , since if we provide the body with more energy and fats that you need, we will gain weight by not burning them.

For this reason, we have managed to adapt the Spartan diet to the normal caloric expenditure of an active person today, since life is very different from that of the soldiers of ancient Rome. Knowing what we now know, the Spartan diet is a diet rich in carbohydrates, but combined with protein to aid muscle development.

As you already know, proteins do not perform their main function correctly if they are not combined with carbohydrates , that is, they do not increase muscle volume and act on muscle growth and development if we do not consume a minimum dose of carbohydrates. We emphasize this concept since there are many diets for muscle development that base their diet on protein for its properties related to muscle building and development.

You should know that protein is not properly assumed by our body if it is not cooked, so that of taking raw egg whites … is not convenient or effective for muscle development .

If you are interested in other diets for muscle development you can click here .

Foods allowed in the Spartan diet

  • You should base your diet on unrefined whole grains (wheat, barley, spelled), quinoa and other natural unrefined carbohydrates, meat, fish, fruits and vegetables.
  • Eat as many fresh fruits and vegetables as you like.
  • Steam vegetables without adding excess fat that can endanger cardiovascular health, due to cholesterol .
  • Consume lean meat and fish as much as you want, you should not fear consuming animal fat if you exercise.
  • It is highly advisable to take bone broth and fish broth that provide us with many nutrients and also help us to hydrate properly.
  • The animal fat serves energy to our body to deal with physical activity.
  • Do not use refined salt but sea salt, or pink Himalayan salt.
  • Do not use sugar but natural honey or maple syrup.
  • Eat fresh food, mainly fruits and vegetables, do not overcook meat and fish. You can use animal fats like butter to cook them.

Foods forbidden or not allowed in the Spartan diet

You should not consume white or refined sugar, refined flours, hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated fats, refined vegetable oils , and soy products.

Precooked and frozen foods, highly processed products, cookies, etc.

Sweets, industrial pastries, sauces and very fatty foods, refined salt.

The training of a Spartan

The level of physical exercise is very important when it comes to this diet.

It is important to emphasize that if your goal is to achieve a defined and muscular body , it will not only be enough to do the Spartan diet, or a diet to increase muscle mass ; Since exercise is a vital part of this type of nutritional guidelines since if you do not do it you will gain weight and expose your body to a higher level of predisposition to suffer from cardiovascular diseases due to high cholesterol and triglycerides .

Workout Routine: Spartan Circuit

It is important that the training is daily and intense, keep in mind that if we eat like a Spartan, we must burn the calories like a Spartan; but life has changed a lot.

A Spartan soldier walked long distances, while we currently drive everywhere; a Spartan soldier carried goods in his work, while today most of our jobs are more sedentary (with the exception of certain jobs as laborers and certain operators).

For all this we must carry out daily workouts that include strength and resistance exercises such as: pull-ups, chest dips, parallel dips, exercises with weights or dumbbells, round dumbbells, etc., in addition to combining it with aerobic exercise that increases our caloric expenditure.

It is very common to perform training circuits in which different exercises, strength, resistance, etc. are combined. These circuits simulate the conditions of the battles that the Spartan soldiers faced.

Sports supplements for a spartan body

The help that the Spartans did not have but we can now find, sports supplements.

There are many sports supplements or nutritional supplements that help increase muscle mass and improve sports performance, also shortening muscle recovery times after exercise.

If you want more information about it, here is everything you need to know about these supplements or nutritional supplements indicated for athletes :

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