Great athletes are made, not born. Athletes with the potential to excel in their sport often fail to reach their potential simply because they do not have the right coaching and support network to take them from good to great. As a result, many high-level athletes focus more on getting the correct sports nutrition from coach Levi than ever before.
Food is essential for any athlete, but it’s even more critical for high-performance athletes who train at very high-intensity multiple times per week. High-performance athletes need a balanced diet that provides enough calories and nutrients without excess fat or sugar.
An athlete’s nutrition plan must also be simple and easy to follow to focus on training rather than worrying about what they eat. Let’s discuss sports nutrition from coach Levi, a guide to health & performance.
What You Need to Know About Pro-Level Athlete Nutrition
The first thing you need to know about pro-level athlete nutrition is that it’s not about fad diets or extreme calorie-cutting – it’s about finding a nutrition plan that works for you and your lifestyle.
Certain principles are essential for any athlete, but pro-level athletes need a nutrition plan that meets their specific requirements. Pro-level athletes need to consume more calories than average to fuel their bodies, recover from workouts, and support muscle growth and repair.
Most athletes need to consume between 20 and 40% more calories than the average person to maintain their health and performance. Pro-level athletes must also ensure they balance macronutrients (fats, proteins, carbohydrates) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals). This will help them maintain their energy levels, recover between workouts, keep their immune system strong, and help prevent injury.
High-quality protein is essential for muscle growth and repair and is particularly important for pro-level athletes.
Protein comprises amino acids, and eight are critical for human health. Your body can produce 6 of these amino acids, but two must be obtained from your diet. These two essential amino acids are “branched chain amino acids,” or BCAAs.
The BCAAs found in high-quality proteins include leucine, isoleucine, and valine. BCAAs are particularly important for athletes because they help maintain muscle mass during periods of high stress, like intense training and competition.
They also help reduce muscle fatigue and improve exercise recovery. High-quality protein supplement is found in many foods, including meat, fish, dairy, eggs, lentils, beans, and nuts.
Carbohydrates are athletes’ most crucial energy source, but many pro-level athletes often underestimate their importance. Carbohydrates are essential for training and competition, and they help athletes recover from workouts.
If you eat the correct amount of high-quality carbohydrates, you’ll have enough energy to train at your highest level and recover fully between workouts. Carbohydrates are often misunderstood and mislabeled.
Many people believe all carbs are bad, but that’s not true. Most high-performance athletes need to consume more high-quality carbohydrates than the average person. The trick is to drink enough high-quality carbohydrates while keeping your total calorie intake in check.
Healthy fats are essential for overall health and performance, but many athletes eat too few. Healthy fats are one of the primary energy sources for high-performance athletes, and they help the body absorb vitamins and minerals.
Healthy fats also help regulate hormones and keep your immune system strong. Unfortunately, the average person is eating too many unhealthy fats and not enough healthy ones.
The majority of processed and fast foods fat is sick and can harm your health and reduce your athletic performance. That’s why most pro-level athletes need to consume more healthy fats. They are essential for optimal performance and long-term health.
Vitamins and Minerals
Every athlete needs to ensure they get enough vitamins and minerals in their diet. They keep your immune system strong and your body hydrated and help you recover between workouts. Many vitamins and minerals are water-soluble, which means they’re only stored in small quantities in your body.
This is particularly important for pro-level athletes who train multiple times per week and quickly burn through their vitamins and minerals. Most of the vitamins and minerals found in food come from fresh produce and unprocessed whole grains and legumes.
This is particularly important for pro-level athletes because they need more vitamins and minerals than the average person. Many pro-level athletes also need to increase their intake of iron and calcium to prevent fatigue and injury.
Food for Thought: Don’t Forget to Enjoy Your Food!
Many people skip counting calories and macronutrients and cutting certain foods out of their diet completely.
If you do this, you’re missing out on one of the most critical aspects of nutrition: enjoyment. Nutrition is not just about meeting your energy needs and training requirements – it’s also about pleasure. To be healthy, you don’t need to eat a diet full of boring, bland foods.
You need to eat a balanced diet comprising a wide range of nutritious foods. If you love chocolate, have a bar now and then. If chips are your guilty pleasure, have a small bag once a week. You don’t need to completely cut out foods you love to be healthy. As long as you’re eating a well-rounded diet with plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables, and protein-rich foods, you’ll be on your way to optimal health.
Final Words on Sports Nutrition From Coach Levi
Athletes need a diet that provides enough calories and essential nutrients without excess fat or sugar. An athlete’s diet must also be simple and easy to follow to focus on training rather than worrying about food.
While every person has their own needs, specific recommendations apply to all athletes.
That’s why athletes need to understand the principles of high-level athlete nutrition, including what to eat, when to eat, and how much to eat. By following these principles, athletes can ensure that they’re getting the right amount of calories and essential nutrients while maintaining a balanced diet that’s enjoyable to eat.