Y-coach Home
Coaching Database
Message Board
Team Decals
Team Pictures
Youth Leagues
Y-coach Shopping

Instructional Coaching DVD's

Custom Car Window Decals

Sterling Silver Sports Cross Pendant

Custom Car Window Decals

 

Knowledge Base Home >> Nutrition >> Winning Nutrition for Athletes >> What Should an Athlete Eat Before, During and After Exercise

Nutrition - What Should an Athlete Eat Before, During and After Exercise



The most important thing is to concentrate on eating a nutritious, balanced diet every day. This provides plenty of energy to grow and exercise. Here are a few tips about eating before, during and after exercise.

Before

  • Have some high carbohydrate foods like bananas, bagels or fruit juices. These foods are broken down quickly and provide glucose to the muscles.
  • The timing of this meal depends on athletes' preference for eating before exercise, but researchers have found that eating something from 1 to 4 hours before exercise helps keep plenty of blood glucose available for working muscles.
  • It is also critical to drink plenty of cool water before exercise to keep muscles hydrated.

During

  • Perspiration and exertion deplete the body of fluids necessary for an optimal performance and lead to dehydration. It is important to drink plenty of cool water, at least a half a cup of water every 20 minutes of exercise. Adding a teaspoon of sugar, a little fruit juice or a small amount of powdered drink mix flavors plain water and may encourage fluid intake.
  • Usually there is no need to worry about replacing carbohydrates unless the exercise lasts over 90 minutes and is hard and continuous. When this happens, drinking a sports drink or other beverage with some sugar in it will fuel and water to the muscles being exercised.
  • Make a homemade sports drink by mixing no more than 4 teaspoon of sugar, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and some flavoring (like a teaspoon of lemon juice) in 8 ounces of water.

After

  • If the exercise was strenuous and lasted a long time, glycogen stores may need refueling. Consuming foods and beverages high in carbohydrates right after exercise will replenish glycogen stores if they are low after exercising.
  • No matter the intensity of the exercise, it's important to drink plenty of water and eat a nutritious, balanced meal that has lots of carbohydrate rich foods such as grains, pastas, potatoes, vegetables and fruits. A teaspoon of sugar, at only 15 calories* per teaspoon, adds flavor to these foods and may increase taste appeal.

 

Y-coach. All rights reserved