Nutrition for Athletes
Nutrition for athletes is a big part of what makes an athlete! You are what you eat! I’ll be making blog posts about different types of ways to go about a diet, but I’d like to give the most fundamental approach for your nutrition.
I want us to understand that the most important nutrient for us is WATER. Water is involved in every bodily function, and makes up 70- 75% of your total body weight. Water helps you to maintain body temperature, metabolize body fat, aids in digestion, lubricates and cushions organs, transports nutrients, and flushes toxins from your body.
So how much water do we actually need?
The amount of water we need depends on 2 variables: body weight and activity level. The recommended water amount is about .5 – 1 ounce of water per body weight. For example, a person that weighs 160lbs will need to be drinking between 80-160 ounces of water per day.
We will now dig deeper into what our “nutrition for athletes” through our macro-nutrients. These would include our Proteins, Carbohydrates, and Fats.
The carbohydrates you take in are going to be a big part of your energy source. In simple terms, the glucose is broken down into glycogen and this is stored into your muscles. If you have ever heard of the term “carb loading” before a big game, then this how its done. A lot of people will load up on carbs for 70% of their diet 2 to 3 days before a game. It is also is a key factor with recovery.
Carbohydrates are divided into two categories of being Simple and Complex. Simple carbohydrates are your fruits and dairy products. Complex carbohydrates are your whole grains and veggies.
Depending on what your diet goals are, then the amount you take in will have a direct correlation of how you perform and look. I will go on in blog posts about the different ways you can diet with carbs.
I’m sure all of you are familiar with this macro. It is the most fundamental knowledge when thinking about working out. It is the necessary nutrient to build muscle! How much should we actually be taking in though?
I have found that rule of thumb for protein is about .7 – 1 g of protein per body weight. For example if you weigh 150 lbs, then you should consume between 120 g – 150 g of protein a day. Factors of losing weight or gaining weight will also help you decide how much protein you need.
Too much protein can be a bad thing as well, so remember you should never really eat over your grams per body weight.
We want to have healthy fats in our diets. These would include avocado oil, coconut oils, nuts, fatty fish, yogurt, and dark chocolate. If you are eating proper carbohydrates and proteins your fats should be at a good level. Usually around a .3 – .4 grams per body weight is a good place for that to be at.
Vitamins are important for the body as well. If your eating the right amount of macros, then the micros should be good. These would include vitamins that we get from our fruit a vegetables. Too much of anything can be bad too, so if you are taking a multivitamin then you may want to stop, because this can cause a build of vitamins that can be toxic for the body.
Minerals are another micro to be aware of. Potassium, calcium, and iron are the big ones that come to mind. To make sure you are getting your mineral needs it is important to know what foods can replenish them. Bananas are huge fro potassium. Also, a sports drink during intense activity will replenish most of your minerals.
If you are struggling with getting your vitamin in, then supplement them with a multivitamin. I recommend a Men’s Multivitamin. Click on the link to get your vitamin supply today!
Nutrition for athletes is a very controversial topic and there are a lot of different theories on how to obtain optimal nutrition. I highly advise that balance between water, macros, and micros is the most important thing to remember when trying to perfect your diet. A balanced diet is essential for a longer and healthier life. Obesity and athletes will never mesh well.
Be on the lookout for blog posts about template diets and how to design them around your workouts!