The biggest limiting factor in athletic performance in nutrition and the sad thing is that the majority of athletes I talk with have no clue what proper nutrition for an athlete looks like.
Now, just to be clear, I am not a nutritionist. However, there are guidelines that every athlete I coach should follow when it comes to fueling their body for peak performance.
For the majority of my athletes I require that they do a food journal which contains everything they eat or drink over a three-day period (2 week days, 1 weekend day).
It always blows my mind what kids are putting in their bodies and what parents are providing for these athletes to eat. Not to be rude, but, its 2017, we have so much information about the negative effects of sugar yet parents are still stocking the house with soda and giving their kids Lucky Charms for breakfast.
Here are the nutritional guidelines I lay out for my athletes….
3 for 3
- Consume a modestly sized meal every three hours that contains each of the three major macronutrients (Protein, Carbs, Fat).
Eat Breakfast Everyday
- Your breakfast should be before 7AM and consist of high protein, high carb, and moderate fat. A PROTEIN SHAKE IS NOT BREAKFAST.
If it Had a Life You Can Eat It
- Remove processed foods from your diet. Eat foods that were alive at some point. By doing this you will almost completely remove processed sugar and the great majority of junk from your diet.
Eat Before Bed
- Prior to going to bed consume either a casein protein shake or cottage cheese. This is a slow-delivery protein that will keep your metabolism working while you sleep.
Meal Prep Every Week
- This allows you to never leave anything to chance. My athlete’s meal prep their breakfast, lunch, and snacks for Monday-Friday.
- Here is a sample breakfast meal prep: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uM4jEHaJwdM
Now, there is a lot more to nutrition than these five guidelines, however, following these five principals makes it very simple to have an effective nutrition strategy.
This is the first in a two-part series addressing athlete’s nutrition. On Sunday, I will have another email that covers portion size, calorie planning, and how to build a proper nutritional day.
I hope you found some useful information in this email. As always, please feel free to reach out at any point with questions.