We talk on and on about what you should and shout not eat. The reason is simple—if you want great results from your body, you’ve go to give your body great fuel to perform. We normally focus on the best foods to eat—for cognition, before you workout, after you workout, and so on. Today we want to look at things an athlete should never eat. Before you recoil at that work never, we mean never like very rarely, intentionally, and in full knowledge of what you’re doing. Your sister’s birthday party? Totally time for cake and ice cream. Tuesday lunch out because you forgot to meal-plan? No. No cake or ice cream. So, without further qualifiers, here are our 5 things athletes should never(ish) eat:
- Trail Mix / Granola – We know, it it was good enough for all those skinny hippies in the PBS documentaries, it can’t be that bad, right? Well, it turns out most of those whole grains, oats, and seeds you see looking so healthy in those granola bags are covered in salt before they’re drenched in sugar. Instead, check out these power packed treats with just the right amount of sweet.
- A meal without protein – Yes, this is not an actual food item, but it is still something you shouldn’t eat. No, this doesn’t mean you need a 16 oz. ribeye at every meal. You don’t even need meat at every meal. But if you are training everyday, pushing and exhausting your muscles, you’ll need that protein to grow and restore your muscles. Protein will also help you feel full until it’s time to eat again.
- White pasta / bread – Again, we aren’t saying never, like… never. But really, a whole grain pasta or bread gives you the carbs for energy, plus the fiber and nutrients you miss in the more refined white versions. If the dish doesn’t require pasta, spring for quinoa instead! It will hold a sauce and carry a flavor like the best rotini!
- Fruit Juice – The same principal that makes whole grain bread a better choice makes a whole fruit a better choice. Once you get rid of the skin and pulp and substance of the fruit, you’re left with a sugar drink with a few (generally added) vitamins and nutrients. No fiber, few nutrients, lots of sugar. Carbonate it and add some color, voila—you’ve got soda. Stick to water as your beverage and grab an actual apple, orange, or grape when you want some fruit in your life.
- Excessive Alcohol – We know, that weekend in St Croix is one you would never forget if you could only remember it! Aside from the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption, there are considerations especially relevant for the athlete. It dehydrates you. Even if you are still resilient enough to bounce up on Saturday morning for a run after a late pub-crawl on Friday, your body simply won’t be ready for it. It weakens the immune system and slows responses, increasing your chances for injury and illness. It can also slow your muscle recovery after training. Have a drink or two on occasion, and then remember what you’re working for. Achieving your goals will always feel better than a hangover. Always.
What you put in your body is as important as the training and practice you do to make sure you’re race ready. For athletes who suffer muscle cramps, know that HOTSHOT takes this idea seriously. Our product, the only one scientifically proven to treat and prevent muscle cramps, is non-GMO, organic, kosher, and gluten-free. If you want a product to kill those cramps whose ingredients you can recognize without a PhD, stop by and pick up HOTSHOT today. Cramp free training? Yes, please. Then keep in touch! Our Facebook page is gluten-free, our Twitter is complete non-GMO, and our Instagram is sugar-free (except that time we made a cocktail… lil sugar there).
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