Often times athletes or parents want to focus on what to eat or drink on game days, when what is arguably even more important to focus on is the day-to-day.
The reason focusing on your day-to-day eating routine is key is because it is what provides the foundation of fuel to build and rebuild your body. Without emphasis on what you are and aren't eating routinely, you could be missing out on important nutrients that your body needs to keep you healthy.
There is a great phrase that I like to remind athletes of: you can't out train a bad diet. This is so true! If you are routinely making lousy choices and not providing your body with enough calories, carbs, protein, fat, vitamins, minerals, and water - your body is missing out.
Notice the emphasis on the word routine. This doesn't mean that you can't ever have a sweet treat or crunchy salty snack, but what it does mean is that routinely you need to be having more of the foods that are rich in nutrients that your body needs to perform at its peak. Foods like: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, healthy fats, nuts, and seeds. Plus making most of what you take in to hydrate your body, water.
Quick steps to boost your eating routine:
1. Carry water with you! Either in a reusable water bottle or bring along bottles of water. This will help to ensure you meet your daily hydration goals.
2. When you are on the go - bring healthier choices with you... or look for healthier choices like KIND Snacks bars (pictured here). What is great about KIND bars is they have only 5 - 6 grams of sugar per bar, which is much less than many other similar products. Plus they have healthy fats from the base of nuts that they are made with!
3. Add-in plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. These are three key groups of foods that many athletes are missing out on, which provide vitamins, minerals, and quality carbs to help fuel the body.
- Add sliced fruit to cereal and yogurt
- Snack on veggies and hummus
- Have fruit and vegetables at every meal
- Add sauteed veggies (e.g. peppers, onions, spinach) to eggs
- Top toast with peanut butter and sliced bananas
- Have guacamole and salsa with whole grain tortilla chips
- Swap out white rice for brown rice
- Add a salad with your meal
- Have fruit, like fresh berries, for dessert