You put a lot of effort into training, which shows in your performance. You want to be the best, but do you know what else makes you the best? Athletic nutrition. Weightlifting and endurance athletes alike rely on protein for muscle growth and recovery—carbs for energy and endurance, and fat for flavor. But sometimes, athletes miss some of the critical factors to peak performance.
Sports nutrition is a tricky business. It is not uncommon for someone who trains five days a week to feel less hungry and, therefore, less interested in eating. So, how do you make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need without being overwhelmed by eating? Read on below to see how you can make sure you are getting the right nutrients for your body as you train.
It is important to learn how to lower stress
Training for physical feat can be stressful, and your muscles are put through a lot. You must learn how to lower stress as one of the things to consider for athletic performance and nutrition. Although it feels like stress can get in the way of achieving your goals, there are some cases where a little amount of stress can help with performance as it can gear the body up for what is about to happen, however, too much of it can hinder your progress with cortisol running rampant through your system and hurting your body.
Eating good foods helps the microbiome keep you healthy
When a person is down, it almost appears that the body wants to eliminate itself by causing illnesses and disease. However, research has shown that how a person eats, exercises, and sleeps greatly impacts the body. Eat and workout wisely; the body will reward you with more energy and a stronger immune system.
Good food, bad food, wrong choice
Stamina, strength, endurance, and flexibility—all of these are essential for the athlete. But stamina, or the ability to keep going for longer, is often the most neglected aspect. The human body has limited energy stores, and if you ask someone who has run a marathon before, they will likely tell you that they did not feel hungry during the last five miles. Why is that? The body does not have much-stored glycogen to draw on, so instead of burning the fat stored within our muscles, our bodies turn to other energy sources, like sugar. Before a sporting event, it is important to eat the best foods that will help your performance, otherwise, you could find yourself bowing out in the final stretch, or doubled up in pain with cramping from the wrong food you consumed.
Building muscle takes more than just protein
Since muscle mass is responsible for at least half your body weight, building muscle is essential for burning fat, building endurance, burning calories, and boosting your metabolism. According to a recent study from the Journal of Nutrition, people who eat a high-protein diet tend to build more muscle and get stronger. Building muscle takes more than just protein. Whilst protein is an important component to build muscle it is essential to add in carbs too as well as fruits, vegetables, and water.
Poor hydration, poor performance
An athlete’s performance depends on a number of variables, including strength, skill, training, and hydration. Hydration is important because it helps support the body’s systems, including the cardiovascular system and muscles. Without proper hydration, the body will compensate by constricting blood vessels, slowing blood flow, and decreasing the amount of oxygen in circulation. This can result in fatigue and muscle cramps.
If you are an athlete, you are probably also very dedicated. You work out at least five times weekly, and many athletes train daily. What you might not realize, however, is that you have to train smart. Being active is good for you, but your training needs to be effective. To maximize your benefits, you need to know the factors for athletic performance and nutrition and apply those to what you are doing.