Monday, October 22, 2007

EATING FOR OPTIMAL SPORTS PERFORMANCE

Food is fuel – the quality of fuel taken affects your performance during activity or day to day lifestyle. Your energy levels, your performance during your event or workout, and you bodies ability to recover efficiently are all affected by your diet.

A lot of people ask me “what is the best food to perform better?” this is a very big question although it looks small. Let’s take a look at some guideline to maximize your performance by properly fueling your body.

Avoid “empty calories”, low nutrients food such as biscuits and cakes, sweets & processed foods. These foods will provide energy but give you no edge on performance! Poor quality fuel will lead to mediocre results. A lot of elite athletes tell me they take sweets or sugary foods prior to the game or race, be cautious there is no evidence that sugary empty calories aid performance or energy levels, it’s a misconception that sugary food aid performance or energy levels.

If you are serious about your training or sport, you need to get your diet right.

1. Choose your foods to fit in within your training: for a quick energy burst, choose foods that are digested quickly – good examples includes bananas, water melons or rock melons. If you aren’t training for a couple of hours, slow release carbohydrates (green vegetables, oats, beans and pulses) eaten with protein are the best option.
2. Good hydration is essential for regular exercisers, particularly in warm weather; don’t wait until you are thirsty as this means you are already dehydrated.
3. Losing any more than 2% of your body weight in water will impair your performance, a loss of 3% or more will dehydrate you, and a 4% loss can detrimentally affect your performance by up to 25%. A good measure of how much to drink water is one pint of water for every pound lost during exercise session. To make it in simpler is to replace 1liter for every KG lost during exercise.

NUTRITION TIPS FOR PEAK PERFORMANCE
· Breakfast is the most important meal.
It’s surprising to see many sports people skip or find hard to have breakfast, but remember it’s the most important meal for training or performance, if you find difficult to have breakfast at least have fresh fruits or fresh fruit juices.
· Drink at least two liters of water each day.
This will maximize energy levels, enhance your performance and keep you well hydrated food.
· Drinking little and often allows the body to absorb water more easily
Gulping large amounts of water immediately before and during training or a race will make you uncomfortable – small regular sips are much easier to handle.
· Don’t try new things on the day of the event or match.
The new food or timing meals and training on non event days to see what suits you best. Some elite athletes find two hours before the event is the best time to consume a meal where as other find two and half hours to suit them. This shows that you have to find the best timing for you.
· Plan ahead
Plan meals and snacks ahead to guarantee top quality nutrition whenever possible, mix fruits and yogurts as small snacks, make up potato/pasta salad/rice for lunch, keep dried fruits, bananas, nuts & seeds at work and training kit bag for a quick fix.

A great idea for breakfast for those who find hard to eat in the morning
One large Banana & 100g yogurt with a small cup of water mixed in blender for 2 minutes is an absolutely nutritious breakfast …. Try it

4 comments:

subcorpus said...

bro ...
most people i know loves breakfast ...
who wanna blend in the mornig anyways ... hehe ...
good article ... wonder how hard it would take some effort to stick to what you suggest ...
it doesnt quite hard ...
will try anyways ...

mash said...

informative and interesting blog

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