It’s official ladies and gentlemen, only one month of summer left!
While many of us are trying to get in last-minute family trips or a couple more days on the boat; some are gearing up for the start of fall sports practices.
School football, cheerleading, cross country, and soccer usually start mid-August, as well as programs like AYSO and Pop Warner football.
After having a couple months of rest and relaxation, young athletes may struggle getting back into the grind of physical exertion. Proper pre- and post-practice nutrition allows athletes to achieve optimal performance in their sport.
Dairy products, of course, play an integral role in their diet.
While having a full stomach before practice sounds like a good plan, its not. It often leads to stomach cramps, nausea and an overall sluggish feeling. This I know from experience!
So, a filling snack, packed with protein and carbohydrates would be a better choice.
Try a layered fruit parfait pre-practice. You can make these at home (recipe below) or buy them at any local market. Parfaits are a great on-the-go snack for any busy family. Parents, this is a good snack for you too. Quick, easy and nutrient packed to fuel you while keeping up with your young athletes.
Carbohydrates are the body’s main source of energy, helping fuel the heart, brain and central nervous system. The protein from the yogurt not only keep them feeling fuller longer but, are an important building block of muscles and bones.
The best post-exercise snack to offer them is low-fat chocolate milk. Extensive research shows that low-fat chocolate milk refuels exhausted muscles with the right mix of protein and carbs.
Chocolate milk has a high-water content that replaces fluids lost in sweat and prevents dehydration. It provides electrolytes like calcium, potassium, magnesium and sodium to help replenish the body. As an added bonus studies show that drinking chocolate milk helps with muscle fatigue and soreness, so it can help you get ready for the next day!
It is a nearly perfect workout recovery drink.
Many professional and colligate athletes are using chocolate milk in their post-workout. To learn more visit: BuiltWithChocolateMilk.com.
Yogurt and Fruit Parfait
This can often be made with ingredients you may already have in your refrigerator. No need for a special shopping trip.
Yogurt - any flavor
Fruit - any kind
Dry cereal - any kind, I suggest using a healthy, fiber rich cereal opposed to granola which is low fiber content.
Simply layer the yogurt, fruit, dry cereal and enjoy!
Tip - Make sure the flavors you are using complement each other!