Courtesy of Coach Timothy:
The purpose of a diet is not to restrict you from eating food; it is to encourage you to eat plenty of the right foods so that your body can recover faster and work more efficiently. Runners expend a lot of energy and require a higher calorie intake than non-runners. Your body needs plenty of fuel to improve your fitness level. If you don’t give your body enough food, or if you’re not giving your body the right foods, your body can’t reach it’s maximum potential and efficiency. Here are some foods to consider:
Whole grains, seeds, and nuts
· Packed with nutrients, proteins, and other good stuff! They contain everything a plant needs to grow which is good for the body.
Fruits and Vegetables
· Best to get a variety of colors (orange, green, purple, yellow, red, blue). Pigments are packed with vitamins that work best when combined with different colors. Best to keep skin on.
· Replace junk food (candy, desserts, chips, fried foods) with fruits and vegetables and you will have WAY more energy.
· Helps body repair itself (that’s how you get stronger)
· Runners need about 50% more protein than non-runners
o 3-5 servings a day (4 ounces is one serving)
· Fish (and other seafood) is so good for you!
· Lean meat, poultry, eggs
o Great source of iron and zinc (especially for you girls)
· Avoid processed meats like lunch meats and raw hot dogs (sorry boys)
o Contains too much sodium and other harmful chemicals
· There’s a reason why (chocolate) milk is used so much by runners
o Calcium for bones
o Whey protein helps muscles repair quickly
· Yogurts and cheese
o Contain live cultures that help body function better
WATER (not soda)
· Your body is mostly water and NEEDS it to function properly and efficiently.
· Start drinking early and often and your body will start to crave it once you get in the habit. You need to learn to love water.
· One of the quickest ways to slow down a car is pouring sugar in the gas tank. Same with your body. White sugar and corn syrup are not good for you. Soda is not good for you. Even diet sodas contain chemicals that will harm your body and keep it from absorbing nutrients. Drink water.
· Sports drinks are great during exercise
If you can choose:
· Choose wheat bread over white bread
· Choose brown rice (or wild rice, quinoa) over white rice
· Choose fruits/vegetables over sugary/greasy foods
· Choose water over just about any other beverage
· Choose grilled/baked over fried
· Fruits (fresh or dried)
· Cashews (lightly salted)
· Soy nuts (remind me of half-popped popcorn kernels)
· String cheese
· Jerky (turkey jerky even better)
· Frozen fruit bars
· Rice cakes
· Cottage Cheese
· Peanut butter and celery