June 15, 2023

Sports nutrition: tips to get you started

If you’re a relative beginner in your chosen sport, you may not have really thought about the impact nutrition can have. From reducing muscle ache and general fatigue, to helping you to recover quicker after exercise, good nutrition has a big role in supporting your training and overall health.

Here are our top 5 tips to get you started:

  • Eat regular meals and never skip breakfast! Something like overnight oats with seeds and fruit is perfect for providing some slow-release carbohydrate, vitamins and minerals (iron, zinc, folate).

  • Include ‘wholegrain’ starchy carbohydrates at mealtimes – choosing options like granary bread, wholewheat pasta and brown rice instead of white versions will help give you a slow release of energy between your meals.

  • Water is generally enough to keep you going (without the need for sports type drinks or extra glucose) for exercise lasting up to and around an hour. About 400-800mls of water per hour should be enough to prevent dehydration, although you may need more on a hot day.

  • If you’re trying to lose weight, try to avoid having too many extra snacks – rather, time your exercise so you follow it up with your next meal. It’s easy to grab that pastry and coffee after your run, without realising you’re consuming more calories that you’ve just burned.

  • Protein shakes are generally not required. Studies have shown most of us eat enough protein (if not too much) from our diet. We can’t actually metabolise protein in amounts over 20-25g. Many protein shakes contain over 30g in a serving. Don’t be tempted by the marketing ploys of your gym or personal trainer. If you really do want to take protein shakes, the best time to have one is after a workout (whey-based shake) or before bed (casein-based shake).

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