3 Ways to use nutrition to elevate your game
Here at Bookapitch, we’re passionate about getting people active. It’s our goal to get 20 Million people exercising, which is why made our sports facility management software so that it would be easier for people to get access to sports facilities. However, it’s very important to be properly fuelled when you are exercising. Not only will it make you feel better, but it can truly bring your game to the next level. Here on the Bookapitch Blog, we’re outlining the three ways you can use nutrition to improve your sports performance.
Make sure you’re adequately hydrated.
You’ve probably been told time and again that you need to stay hydrated — but why? Staying hydrated is key to optimising your exercise performance, because when you’re dehydrated, the impacts can be quite debilitating. Your body is made up of 60% water, and when you even lose just 2% of that hydration, you can experience muscle cramping, fatigue, lack of coordination, and increased cardiac stress. Hydration isn’t just important during the time that you’re exercising, however. Proper hydration starts hours before your athletic performance. The American Council on Exercise reports that you should consume around 0.5 litres of water in the 2-3 hours before exercising and a glass of water in the 20 minutes before starting your workout. Adequate hydration continues during and after the workout, as well — they recommend continuing to drink water every 10 to 20 minutes during activity, and drink another glass 30 minutes after you finish.
Carbs are a good thing - make sure you consume plenty of them.
Despite what many people claim, carbs are not the enemy! Feeling up on carbohydrates is essential for energy and endurance when exercising, as well as mental sharpness. You can find carbohydrates in foods like grains, fruits, and vegetables. Complex carbohydrates (such as sweet potatoes and brown rice) provide a source of energy that fuel muscle contractions. Once they’re digested, they are broken down into glycogen, which is the energy source most commonly used for short spurts of energy (think HIIT, weightlifting, and sprinting). Carbohydrates are also key for endurance exercise, as not only do they help with energy but are key for mental sharpness — essential for any endurance workouts.
To meet the needs of training, protein is key.
It’s well known that protein is essential for exercise. When the body exercises, muscle fibres essentially tear apart for each action and protein helps the body repair those muscle fibres. When you consume a high protein meal, muscle breakdown decreases and muscle repair is increased. However, it’s not just the amount of protein intake that matters, but the quality of the protein that is being consumed. Ensure you’re consuming quality protein and at the right time — not just drinking a protein shake after your work out! For peak performance, consume protein regularly throughout your day (about 20-30g protein per meal). Animal sources of protein are highly recommended, but if you’re a vegetarian try combining various forms of plant protein to ensure you’re getting an adequate intake.
With the proper nutrition on board, your athletic performance can become unstoppable. What do you do to elevate your game? Let us know by tagging us on Instagram or Twitter @Bookapitch to be featured!