Northwest Horizons School News

Northwest Horizons

Athletes feed their egos and their stomachs

Junior+Madison+Ayres+loves+a+protein+bar+before+practice.+Quick+snacks+like+bars+are+helpful+for+athletes+on+the+go.
Junior Madison Ayres loves a protein bar before practice. Quick snacks like bars are helpful for athletes on the go.

Junior Madison Ayres loves a protein bar before practice. Quick snacks like bars are helpful for athletes on the go.

Junior Madison Ayres loves a protein bar before practice. Quick snacks like bars are helpful for athletes on the go.

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Athletes are ‘eating’ both on and off the court, but how does one know how to keep a good diet?

An athlete’s diet should consist of balanced elements that they need in order to improve in their sport.

Hydration is most important; without it, an athlete would be very unhealthy.

“I get five or more glasses of water a day, I should drink more because I’m usually dehydrated so I get dizzy.” Junior Madison Ayres said.

Athletes need water before, during and after activity.

“Athletes should consume 18 or more glasses of water a day, but it varies based on the intensity of a workout,” Football coach Kevin Wallace said.

Check urine to see if one is hydrated. A clear or a pale yellow means hydration, but a dark yellow means dehydration.

Electrolytes are constantly used in the body, they help transmit nerve signals. Sweating releases them along with water.

“You should consume more salt on your food because of the depletion of sodium and chloride through sweating,” Wallace said.

To replenish them, drink sports drinks like Gatorade and balance it with water.

Protein always comes to mind when one thinks of gaining muscle, but an athlete must know how to properly consume it.

“The more intense a work out is the more protein and carbs your body needs; athletes should consume 20g or more within 20-30 min after a workout,” Wallace said.

Red meat, such as steak or beef, should be balanced with white meat, like fish or chicken. Eating fatty cheeseburgers everyday as protein is not healthy and can make you sick during activity.

“I drink a protein shake which is supposed to help me gain weight, I also have meat like chicken and steak,” Sophomore Ethan Pegram said.

Protein shakes and protein bars help athletes gain weight or can be a healthy ‘fill up’ on the go.

“Before a game I like to drink a gatorade and eat a protein bar; a quick meal since I never have time to sit down and eat,” Ayres said.

The big brands that are sponsored by famous athletes can be hiding some unhealthy ingredients.

“Some protein powders do have a high amount of cholesterol, most people just read the label and do not understand the use of them,” Wallace said.

Sodium and added sugars or flavors can cause a ‘sugar high’ or make one feel sick.

“If you are trying to put on mass, you should drink heavier shakes, but some have added sugars which makes your energy high, and then go down,” Pegram said.

Protein supplements are good for an athlete, one just needs to know which to choose.

“Athletes should do research, ask a coach or someone that is knowledgeable about supplements,” Wallace said.

Eating before and after activity is crucial. Before; an athlete should not eat spicy or greasy foods or drink carbonated refreshments that can make them sick.

“A meal should be eaten 3 hours prior to competition or a small granola bar or fruit 30-60 minutes before; but eating too much protein can dehydrate you,” Wallace said.

Big meals can weigh one down, so athletes snack before and eat after.

“After, I try to eat a big meal, with meat, veggies and fruit,” Ayres said.

While others can do the opposite.

“I eat a protein or recovery bar after practice along with water,” Pegram said.

After a practice or game an athlete has to refuel what they lost, this is where recovery bars and shakes are useful.

Having a good diet as an athlete can be difficult on a tight schedule, but these tips can help one thrive.

“As an athlete, I want to put the best possible thing into my body.” Ayres said.

 

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Northwest Horizons School News
Athletes feed their egos and their stomachs