Sports nutrition focuses on providing enough energy and nutrients to meet the demands of training and exercise. It enables the athlete to achieve optimal body weight and body fat levels for performance.
>> Include a wide variety of foods like wholegrain breads and cereals, vegetables (particularly leafy green varieties), fruit, lean meat and low-fat dairy products
>> Eat more carbohydrates during exercise/competition that lasts more than an hour to replenish energy and delay fatigue
>> Protein is an important part of a training diet and plays a key role in post-exercise recovery and repair. Include proteins like meats, fish, poultry, eggs, beans, nuts, dairy products, and other foods.
>> Drinking plenty of fluids before, during and after exercise is very important. Water is a suitable drink, but sports drinks may be required especially in endurance events or warm climates.
>> The pre-event meal should be easily digestible, high-carbohydrate, low-fat, low-fibre and known not to cause gastrointestinal upset. Examples of appropriate pre-exercise meals and snacks include cereal and low-fat milk, toast/muffins/crumpets, fruit salad and yoghurt, pasta with tomato-based sauce, a low-fat breakfast or muesli bar or low-fat creamed rice.
>> Drink cold beverages to cool your core body temperature and reduce sweating.
>> Choose easily digestible foods (ie, not fried).
>> Avoid sugary foods/drinks within 1 hour of the event.
>> Consult an accredited sports dietician or a registered nutritionist who specialises in sports nutrition beforehand to assess your suitability for a particular supplement.
>> Suitable choices to start refuelling include sports drinks, juices, cereal and low-fat milk, low-fat flavoured milk, sandwiches, pasta, muffin/crumpets, fruit and yoghurt.