Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Nutrition & Recovery from Injury

Don't let injuries sideline you on game day. A healthy sports diet can help you heal, recover, and get back in action!

Protein: Injuries, surgeries, and stress can all increase protein needs, especially in young athletes. The body uses protein to build bone and muscle, heal injuries, and fight infections by keeping the immune system healthy.
  • Good sources of protein include fish, chicken, turkey, beef, pork, eggs, beans, soy foods, milk, cheese, and yogurt.

Calcium & Vitamin D work together to build and maintain strong bones.
  • Calcium is in dairy foods like milk, yogurt, & cheese; Calcium-fortified soy milk, almond milk, and orange juice; and veggies like broccoli and kale. 
  • Vitamin D is found in fish, eggs, and in fortified foods like milk & some orange juices. Your body can also make its own Vitamin D from the sunlight!

Vitamin C helps your body to form collagen. Collagen is a protein needed for strength and flexibility; it repairs tendons and ligaments and strengthens bones. Vitamin C also gives your immune system a boost. Make sure you eat plenty of foods with Vitamin C.  
  • Fruits and veggies are good sources of Vitamin C: oranges and orange juice, broccoli, red & green bell peppers, strawberries,  grapefruit and grapefruit juice, tomatoes, papaya, cantaloupe, watermelon.

Vitamin A is needed for growth & development, bone formation, wound healing, and it helps the immune system work properly.
  • Good sources of Vitamin A include bright orange fruits like mangoes, papayas, apricots, cantaloupe, and peaches; milk, eggs, liver, and fortified cereals; carrots, sweet potatoes, and red bell peppers; spinach, kale, and other dark-green leafy veggies.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Get Your ZZZZZs.... A to Z Weight-Loss Tips for Long-Term Success - Tip Z

3 Simple Ways Sleep Can Help You Lose Weight

Many Americans do not get enough sleep. With our busy lifestyles, sleep seems to be a rare commodity, but getting adequate sleep is crucial to health and weight loss. 
How you ask? 

1. Getting more sleep gives you more energy to exercise. 
Exercise is an important factor in the weight loss equation. If you are constantly fatigued and tired from lack of sleep, you won't want to exercise.    

Sleep = Energy = Exercise= Weight loss

2. Getting more sleep reduces the number of hours you are awake and able to eat each day.
Someone who sleeps only 5 hours a day has the opportunity to eat during the other 19 hours. That is a lot of calorie input time! Try to get the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep each night, and that will reduce your eating opportunities, reduce calorie intake, and help you lose weight.
Sleep = Not eating = Reduced calorie intake = Weight loss

3. Getting more sleep reduces cravings for sweets, high-carb snacks, and large portions. 
Let's face it: a sleepy brain makes poor choices, and that includes food choices. Many research studies have shown that lack of sleep leads to cravings for energy-dense sweets, high-carb foods, late-night snacking, and eating larger portions. These poor choices can all lead to excess calorie intake and weight gain. 

Sleep = Better food choices = Reduced calorie intake = Weight loss

If you want to lose weight and get healthy, 
then get your ZZZZZZZs!

Friday, February 13, 2015

You Decide! A to Z Weight-Loss Tips for Long-Term Success - Tip Y

Weight loss does not come from "super foods", "fat burning pills", "gluten-free diets", or any other external factor. 
Weight loss comes from internal forces: YOUR DECISIONS!

You decide to eat the potato chips or the fruit.
You decide to drink sugary soda or water.
You decide to sit and watch TV or get out and walk.
You decide to sleep in an extra half hour or get up and exercise. 
You decide to drink 3 beers or enjoy 1 beer in moderation.
You decide to order pizza or make a cheap, healthy dinner.
You decide to go to the McDonald's drive-thru or stop for a quick, healthier sub sandwich.
You decide to take the elevator or walk the stairs.
You decide to sit at the dog park or take the dog on a walk or jog.

The day-to-day decisions we make regarding our food intake and physical activity can make a HUGE impact on our lifestyle, health, and weight. 

When it comes time to make these decisions, remember to think about your lifestyle and weight loss goals. 



Sunday, January 25, 2015

"X" the Excuses! A to Z Weight-Loss Tips for Long-Term Success - Tip X

"I don't have time to exercise."
"It's too expensive to eat healthy."
"I'm too busy with the kids' schedules."
Etc., etc., etc.

If you want to get healthy, then you need to make goals and plans, NOT excuses. 

Here are 10 simple tips to beat those excuses and get healthy:

  1. Jog or walk while the kids are at their sports practices, warm-ups, or games.
  2. Turn on some music and dance while you do housework.
  3. Do calisthenics, jump rope, or do jumping jacks while you watch your favorite TV program.
  4. It's not necessary to eat fancy, gluten-free, paleo diet foods and nutritional supplements from expensive grocers to be healthy. Much of the fad diets and supplements are unnecessary for most people anyway, and they don't work. Simple, whole, real foods are best, and tend to be cheaper.
  5. Take a walk with the family after dinner.
  6. Meet up with friends to go on a walk or a hike instead of having coffee or alcoholic beverages. 
  7. It only takes 5 minutes to pack a healthy lunch...really! Time yourself if you don't believe me! Make a PB and J sandwich, pack it with a banana, trail mix, and water, and bring this with you to work instead of eating out. This saves money and calories.  
  8. Play with the kids! Join in the fun and play hide and seek, tag, shoot hoops, play soccer, ride bikes, etc. The kids will love it too!
  9. Walk or hike with the dog instead of sitting while your pooch plays at the dog park.
  10. Google some easy, quick, healthy recipes you can cook at home with the family. If everyone chips in, it will get done quickly and is much cheaper and healthier than ordering pizza.
Recipe ideas for cooking healthy on a budget 

When you find yourself making an excuse, find a way to beat that excuse. 
You are worth it!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Soccer Nutrition Tips

Soccer requires endurance, speed, strength, and technical skills. Hard work in training is vital in order to improve performance, and a good sports diet can offer many benefits. 
Eating the right foods at the right times can:

-Allow you to train longer and with more intensity 
-Reduce fatigue 
-Reduce risk of injury and illness
-Help you recover more quickly from practices and games
-Provide confidence in being well-prepared for game days

         Proper nutrition is the key to achieving your optimum performance, both individually and as a team. 

Fueling Soccer

Carbohydrates (Carbs): whole grain breads, cereals, pastas, rice, fruits, veggies, crackers, low-fat milk, soy milk, almond milk, yogurt
  • Carbs are the main fuel for sports, so most of your calories should come from carbs. 
  • Your muscles use carbs for energy during practice and games, and carbs are also the main fuel for your brain. 
  • Eating carbs before practice will help keep your energy high throughout practice and allow you to train harder. This will help improve your overall performance. 
  • Carbs also “refuel” your muscles after practice and games. Refueling as soon as possible after practice increases your muscles’ energy storage (glycogen) for your next practice. This can help you recover more quickly and make practices seem easier, allowing you to train even harder. 
Protein: fish, chicken, turkey, beef, pork, eggs, beans, soy foods, milk, cheese, yogurt.
  • Protein is necessary for muscle recovery and repair after practices and games. 
  • Protein is also very important for growth and development during the teen years. 
  • Getting the right amount of protein will help you stay healthy, get stronger, and improve your game. 
Fluids → water, sports drinks (Gatorade), milk, 100% juice
  • Fluids are very important before, during, and after training and games. 
  • Dehydration can cause headaches, muscle cramps, and fatigue. This can really hurt your performance. 
  • It is important to start drinking fluids at least 1 to 2 hours before practice, take quick fluid "pauses" during practice, and continue drinking fluids after practice so you can rehydrate your body. 
  • Water is the best choice for hydration. 
  • However, it is recommended to drink sports drinks with added carbs and electrolytes (like Gatorade) during strenuous practices lasting 2 hours. This added fuel will give you energy during the last minutes of an intense practice session when your energy is running low. 
Soccer Nutrition Tips on School Days.

 Student athletes who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom than those who skip breakfast.

Some healthy examples include:
  • breakfastcereal with fruit and milk; large fruit/yogurt smoothie; breakfast burrito with eggs, cheese, and ham; pancakes or waffles with fruit and turkey sausage; oatmeal with dried fruit and milk; bagel topped with PB and glass of milk.
  • lunch: Make a healthy lunch at home and bring it to school- PB and jelly sandwiches, deli meat sandwiches, fruits, cheese and crackers, sports bars, trail mix, water or milk

AFTER-SCHOOL/PRE-PRACTICE SNACK OR MEAL.   These should be high-carb foods and low in fat so they digest quickly enough before your practice. If practice is late in the evening, then more food can be eaten so you don't get hungry during practice. Avoid fatty, greasy fast foods and junk foods because they can cause stomach aches and make you feel tired and sleepy before practices.

Pre-practice snack/meal ideas (have both food and fluids) 
    • Foods: Fruit, granola bar, crackers, trail mix, pretzels, bagel with PB, sandwich, fruit smoothie
    • Fluids: Water is best. 

Eating a snack with carbs and protein as soon as possible after practice (within 30 minutes) helps your muscles recover more quickly. The snack should be readily available in your soccer bag so you can eat it as soon as possible (on the drive home). Chocolate milk, sports bars, trail mix, and fruit are a great post-workout recovery snacks.

    EAT A HEALTHY DINNER WITHIN 2 HOURS AFTER PRACTICE; DON'T FORGET FLUIDS TOO!  Your dinner meal will help you refuel and recover for the next day's practice or game.

    Remember, the best energy booster and muscle builder for athletes is 
    a healthy sports diet!