Most athletes practicing team sports such as basketball, football, volleyball, baseball and hockey are aware of the importance of speed, dexterity and strength. 

The same players should be aware of the importance of eating the right meals to get the most out of each other during the match. 

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A meal before the match 

Competitors should eat 2-3 hours before the game meal abundant in complex carbohydrates, which will provide the body with an optimal level of glucose during the match. 

– Coaches / Team Captains should organize pre-match meals for the entire team containing large amounts 

carbohydrates such as bread, oatmeal, pasta, rice, fruits and vegetables – and lean protein sources. 

The plate of such an athlete should consist of 2/3 of carbohydrates and 1/3 of full-value protein. 

– Athletes should obtain sodium regularly lost with sweat during exercise – its deficiency can cause muscle cramps. 

You can do this by regularly salting dishes or eating salty snacks like pretzels, crackers or drinking rich drinks 

in appropriate electrolytes. 

Meal after the match 

During the match, our energy deposits – glucose, glycogen – are depleted. Our goal after the match is 

– Quick replenishment of energy in muscles and liver, delivering simple carbohydrates up to 30 minutes after the match 

(Studies have shown that people who ate a fast carbohydrate meal after a match / workout had better performance at the next 

training / match from people lingering with a meal or adding fats to food, which 

they slow down the absorption of protein and carbohydrates.) 

– Larger carbohydrate meal 2 hours after the match, for example oatmeal, raisins, nuts on milk. 

Quick access to snacks 

Many athletes fly directly after school for training and there is no time for a real meal rich in carbohydrates 

it will raise your training efficiency. Snacks that take up relatively little space but have a lot of energy are helpful. 

Eat well during the journey to the match 

It must not be forgotten that we do not always have access to the food we want, players go to matches, often even the trip lasts for 10 hours, and the food can only be eaten in a restaurant or where it will stop with the trainer. Sometimes you have to choose a lesser evil, for example when you are stopped at a fast-food snack. What then should you choose? 

Sample dishes 

– pancakes, scrambled eggs, 

– meat sandwiches with low fat content 

– Milk shakes (not those from mcdonald) 

– Fried turkey meat, chicken with vegetables and potatoes / rice 

– If we find a Mexican restaurant – beans, tomatoes with rice. 

Try to eat the food as little processed as possible. 

 

Meals on the road 

– Skinny protein source (chicken breast, turkey), boiled eggs, vegetables, fruits. 

– Wholemeal bread, pasta, rice. 

– Milk, homemade fruit juice. 

Provide the right amount of fluids. 

Water is a component constituting 60-65% of the total body weight of an athlete. 

– if you lose too much fluids without renewing them, you are exposed to the loss of important electrolytes (like sodium, potassium) 

which can lead to dehydration. 

– dehydration can lead to lack of energy, weakness of performance during the match. Up to 2% weight loss due to expulsion 

Water can introduce performance disadvantages, and hence – worse performance during the match. You need to remember to supplement these fluids, especially during the season and high temperatures when 

you are particularly vulnerable to dehydration. 

How to drink to have the optimal amount of water and no discomfort with “leaping water in the stomach? 

– Remember to drink small amounts of water but often throughout the day. 

– Drink more water 2-3 hours before the match. 

– One glass of water 20-30 minutes before the match. 

– As far as possible, top up the water during breaks during the match. 

Caloric balance 

– Athletes practicing team sports should have a calorie distribution of 60% carbohydrates, 25-30% fat, 15% proteins. 

– Carbohydrate meals should be consumed in the morning and before the match, protein-carbohydrate after the match, and protein-fat meals in the evening. 

Energy injection and supplementation. 

– To stimulate physical activity, stimulants such as caffeine, tyrosine and taurine can be used while drinking / gulpting an hour before the match / training. 

– For longer tournaments, it is also recommended to use creatine, which will allow to place larger amounts of glycogen. 

– Of course, you should get vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fats (6g of fish fat per day). 

Summary 

Nutrition in team sports plays a very important role in making progress and post-workout regeneration. Many athletes are aware of this 

but the large majority of them do not pay attention to what they eat and at what times it does. Consuming a meal with a long interval between exercise and meal will result 

low energy, while too short a period of time causes macronutrients not to be absorbed. Also neglecting the supply of the right amount of fluids and electrolytes 

during the match, it may lead to dehydration and decrease in efficiency. 

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You can read also: HEALTHY NUTRITION – FROM WHAT TO START? BLACK LIST

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