It has been said that artists are made not born. Well as a matter of fact this can be said about anyone, especially athletes. Genetics does play a role – the difference between a sports champion and an athlete is the genetic factor. Still any good sportsman knows that to get to a legendary or Olympic champion role, strict diets and constant training are what will make the difference in the end.
Natural nutrition is always the best choice for athletes along with drinking plenty of water for hydrating the body. Adequate water consumption with a balanced diet will provide the athlete with all the energy needed to boost performance.
Hydration is of utmost importance to all life but more so for athletes who lose copious amounts of water due to sweating while training or performing. The human body is made up of about sixty percent water and all the cells in the body must be totally hydrated for the cell and each organ to perform their biological functions properly. The old rule of eight glasses of water a day is no joke as the body needs water to remove the toxins and waste as urine and feces and the body needs to regulate body temperature by sweating.
Athletes sweat a lot during training or performing as a lot of calories are burnt to provide energy for the body. This in turn raises body temperature which is cooled down by sweating. Sport nutritionists recommend drinking two to three cups of water for each pound lost after exercising.
All body functions need fuel for the cells to perform their functions. A healthy balanced diet provides the fuel for natural sports nutrition. Athletes must consume the right combination and quantity of foods containing carbohydrates, proteins and fats, providing energy, minerals and essential oils.
The most important energy sources are carbohydrates, found in pastas, breads, grains like rice wheat and oats, cereals, fruits, and vegetables. Seventy percent of the body’s energy needs can be got from these foods. The starch in carbohydrates or carbs as sports nutritionists call them are converted to sugar for energy, providing power and endurance to the body for maximum intensity short-duration activities.
In order to maximize the capability of carbs, it is important to consume a lot of carbs at least a week before the actual competition to have reserve energy available. During physical activities lasting more than an hour, more carbs must be consumed in order to prevent fatigue. These carbs can be fruits or fruit juices.
Proteins are another important natural sports nutrition element. Eggs, dairy products, fish, meats, fowl, beans and nuts are all good sources and athletes must consume them regularly. Fifteen percent of the body’s calories are supplied by proteins. Athletes can calculate their protein intake by considering their fitness level, the type of exercise, its duration and intensity along with their overall calorie and carb intake.
Fats and essential oils are also important in a natural sports nutrition diets. Fats though essential, must be monitored as only small amounts are needed by the body for proper functioning. Excessive consumption of fats can lead to heart diseases, cancers and other major health conditions.
Excellence in sports requires discipline, determination, courage, persistence and strict dietary habits of natural sports nutrition. These sacrifices will well be worth their while when that all important race is run and victory achieved.