ABC’S OF SPORTS NUTRITION: FUEL YOUR ENGINE!
PART 1, A-D
COMPILED BY DR. JOHN CONDON, NORTH ACADEMY CHIROPRACTIC
Always eat breakfast; it’s the meal of champions! Be sure to fuel up so you’ll have lots of energy to exercise and train for your high energy day! Eat within two-three hours of waking up. Consume a breakfast rich in carbohydrates! All the food we eat is Organic and Non GMO. We also recommend getting a good source of protein and fat as well.
Breakfast for the active athlete…How do you fuel your engine? We recommend a protein/carbohydrate combination. Some breakfast ideas; start with whole eggs or smoked salmon, ½ avocado for some good fats, steamed spinach with salt, lemon and olive oil, rice, whole grain cereal or oat meal with some nuts and fruit—this is an easy carb-protein combination. We are also big fans of drinking homemade bone broth, rich in glucosamine, amino acids, gelatin and collagen for your joint health.
Carbohydrates are the body’s primary source of fuel. They are essential to fuel-up and refuel your muscles. For every 15 minutes of endurance exercise you should try to consume around 50-75 calories. It is easiest on the digestive system to eat small amounts of food over time. Dried fruits such as apricots, dates, and figs, nuts and seeds as a trail mix provide a condensed form of calories, moisture and fiber. Some great choices of complex carbohydrates are baked sweet potato, pasta, rice, beans, cereal, buckwheat pancakes, carbohydrate drink, Cliff bar, Luna bar, Boulder bar, Multigrain waffles, whole grain bread, bagel or muffin. Eating carbs within 2 hours before you exercise will help you perform better. Many studies in sports nutrition indicate a post-exercise drink with a combination of carbohydrates and protein is best to begin with. The next step is to add in complex carbohydrates within the next 2 hours that will digest rather slowly and continue to deliver glucose into the system for about 3 hours following the meal.
Dehydration slows you down! A 2% dehydration can reduce your performance by as much as 10-15%. Drink before you are thirsty. Plan to drink extra fluids 2 hours before your competition. The kidneys require about 45 to 90 minutes to process fluids. Drink 1-2 (8oz. glasses) ten minutes before the event. To calculate your daily requirements take your body weight and divide it in half. Convert this number into ounces of water. This will be the minimum number in ounces per day just so the body can function properly. For every 30 minutes of exercise you should consume an extra 8-10 ounces of water. We recommend The Mountain Valley Spring Water!
References: Janice Davidson, MPH Sports Nutrition, R.D. & Nancy Clark MS, R.D.