When you put a lot of effort into your training and competitive sport, you need to fine-tune yourself into an athlete. Your nutrition plays a huge role in your sports performance and competing in a high-level sport requires a lot of energy, all of which comes from your nutrition. Alongside endless practice sessions, there is also planning, recovery and rest periods and, of course, your diet.
When you have a low-performance diet but are a high-performance athlete, then your results will inevitably plummet. There’s nothing much worse than putting in all that effort, spending all those hours practising and then running on low energy. The reality is that no matter how much you try and outwork a terrible diet, you will have to work harder in order to improve.
Eat Your Greens
For athletes, their focus usually relies on protein and carbs. One provides fuel, whilst the other provides the power needed to help muscles and keep the body training at a high level. This means that forgetting to eat vegetables can happen to even the most serious of athletes. Many of us forget that our body isn’t able to use carbohydrates and protein without micronutrients which are found in vegetables.
Whilst protein and carbohydrates are important, so too are the vitamins and minerals which help to facilitate their process. It is important to try and eat vegetables with every main meal and layer the vegetables which you are eating.
Many athletes want a quick and easy answer to reducing muscle soreness, but did you know that you can accelerate your recovery efforts inbetween your gym and training sessions by eating berries? Research has shown that athletes who regularly consume berries around their workout have better immune and inflammation responses during and after a workout compared to those who don’t eat berries.
Take Advantage Of Sleep To Increase Recovery
As an athlete, you’ll know that sleep is a hugely powerful weapon to have when training. Not only will you recover faster for your next workout, but getting enough sleep also means that you aren’t lethargic and demotivated when it comes to your workouts. Athletes miss the biggest anabolic opportunities when sleeping, so instead of using your sleep time to catch up on your Z’s, you can also help to charge your recovery process by consuming some slow-release protein before bed.
Track And Monitor Your Nutrition
The easiest way to stay on top of your nutrition is to keep a food and diet journal and, whilst this may sound tedious, it will give you a hugely accurate overview of how you are eating whilst also helping you to connect the dots inbetween training periods where you might feel particularly weak or lethargic. Keeping on top of your nutrient and vitamin intake is also important when you alter your diet, as you may notice dips in your mood and general wellbeing. Taking probiotic capsules and magnesium tablets are likely to help you in the long run and make you feel better.
An analysis of weight loss studies found that those who self-monitor and evaluate their own diets is a key contributor to how successful they are in achieving not only their weight loss goals but also consistency in the gym.