Wednesday, August 28, 2013

I have low iron - now what?

It is common for athletes - especially runners - to be diagnosed with iron-deficiency anemia. But why does that matter and what do you do now?

What Is It?
Iron is a trace mineral that the body needs to obtain from food for proper function of key biological processes. Iron carries oxygen in the blood and delivers it to the lungs and muscles. It is also important for the proper function of the immune system. Each red blood cell that you have in your body contains a protein called hemoglobin (what gives red blood cells their color) that iron is attached to. 

Why Do I Need It?
Getting the right amount of iron is important because it determines how much oxygen gets to the rest of the body. If iron is low, the body starts making fewer red blood cells—leading to fatigue, feelings of coldness, decreased physical performance and anemia. Both vegetarian and female athletes are at an increased risk of developing iron deficiency anemia.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Great pre-workout snacks before that afternoon practice

School is in full swing. That means no longer is there the luxury of TIME before after-school or afternoon practices. Snacking between lunch and your workout is one of the most important fueling times of the day. Here are some performance-enhancing options:

If you have 45-60 minutes to spare:

In the car - try one...
1 Clif, Luna or Larabar
Trail Mix- Try Planters Nutrition Sustaining Energy Mix (pre-packaged in single servings)
1 Jiff to-go container of PB or Justin's to-go container of almond butter with graham crackers

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Snacks for the student-athlete: for the home, car, dorm or workout bag

It's that time of year - back to school time! That means many student athletes are back in full swing with training as well. Crucial to success in workouts is timing of intake before and after practice. Eating only three meals per day is not enough. Snacks are a must to ensure muscles are fueled pre-workout and recovering post-workout. Whether at home, in the car, in the dorm or heading to practice, here are is a list of great performance-enhancing snack components to have on hand (both perishable and non-perishable).

Cheese sticks
Babybel cheese
Individual yogurt containers (non-fat...Greek or regular)
Fresh fruit - especially packable fruit such as apples, peaches, pears, oranges and nectarines
Baby carrots
Better yet just buy a pre-cut veggie tray and put at eye level in the fridge
Individual containers of hummus & pretzels (available at most grocery stores)
100% fruit juice boxes
Low-fat chocolate: both large container and individual sized to take out the door

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Nutrition Race Report: Trail Half Marathon August 3rd, 2013

This race report will be called, "How to try to save a good race gone badly".  If you are only interested in the race nutrition, scroll down to "Race". on....

Friday: Day Before
6:30pm: Dinner at a family restaurant. Unfortunately they were out of pasta (it was the night's special). So I opted instead for turkey breast, mashed potatoes (no gravy), corn and a roll. Water to drink = ~90gm carbohydrate, 25gm protein

9pm: Snacktime! Cheerios in skim milk with peanuts on top, 2 cups water = ~35gm carbohydrate, 16gm protein

10:15pm: In bed, but had a hard time falling asleep. Was overly warm and found it hard to hear Emma in the room across the hallway so I attribute it to being distracted. Finally fell asleep I'm guessing around midnight??

Saturday: Race Day
Woke up on time around 5:50am. While driving in on Friday, I realized the house was actually about 25minutes from the race site, which bumped up my schedule for the morning a bit.