Eating the right food is clearly necessary for good health but in addition to all that it links directly to your athletic performance. If you have an important game coming up, then you should be really careful of what you consume the day before because all of it will affect whether or not you will be able to perform to your full potential.
Carbs and athletic performance
Carbohydrates are necessary if you are an athlete because it supplies your body with the necessary energy that allows it to withstand intense games and body movements. If you don’t take in enough carbs, your body movement will be limited to a short time only, and even in that time, there are chances of injury in case of cramps. Studies show that taking in enough carbohydrates and proteins about 12-18 hours before your actual game can improve your performance by a great deal and keep you active throughout.
Glycogen is a substance which is the body’s main source of energy; it is stored in your muscles, and as you do an activity it gets released time to time. From a very long time, runners and athletes have been using this strategy of loading themselves with carbs so that the storage of glycogen is maximized and saved for your big game. This strategy of carbohydrate loading can be specifically useful for intensive activities like hiking and swimming. People who are used to going to the gym on a daily basis and those who further are involved in weight lifting should certainly increase their carbohydrate intake because they need great amounts of energy for all that.
Now that we have established the fact that carbohydrate loading is essential if you are an athlete and there is an important game coming up in a day or two, you should also know which foods will load you up with those good carbs.
When you choose your meal the night before your game, make sure that 60-65 percent of it is carbs. Close options for this would be eating foods like creamy pasta, rice in any form, potatoes in the form of fried chips or even a wedges, bread and lots of fruit. Be very careful that you don’t only take in carbs because there needs to be some percentage of protein and good fats to balance it all. Your main aim should be double the ratio of carbohydrate, protein, and fats that you normally take by not increasing the calorie intake.
All of this will ensure that your body is all prepped up and ready to give its best. This, however, will not work if you have been eating carelessly for the past weeks because one night cannot make up for weeks of unhealthy eating habits. You should fuel your body properly throughout the year so that any time when you need to prepare, that one night of extra carb intake can do the magic.