What separates you from LeBron James? Other than, of course, his athletic abilities, hard work and the results he has achieved? And, you know, the popularity, the money and the fame? Unlike you, LeBron James eats really healthy food and every single one of his meals is prescribed by a dietitian and is, hence, nutritive and beneficial to his strength and performance. That means no fast food, no sweets, no soda drinks and absolutely no late night snacks. Yes, these are the most delicious meals on the planet, but they are also quite harmful. If you are an athlete and wish to eat properly, you should find inspiration in professional athletes’ diets. Here are three recipes that everyone can make and that will turn your meals into something special.
Breakfast for Champs
No athlete skips breakfast – they sometimes stay in bed late, but definitely have a healthy meal some time during the morning. Breakfast wakes you up, boosts your metabolism, gives you strength and puts you in the right mood. Some of the most popular options are oatmeal, eggs, protein pancakes and smoothies, but a little creativity never hurts.
A world-famous yoga fanatic, Rachel Brathen recommends granola for superheroes and mermaids. Including homemade granola – that is already perfect for athletes – chia and pumpkin seeds, as well as low-fat Greek yogurt and dried fruits or berries of your choice, this breakfast is full of energy. It feeds you fiber, provides your muscles with glucose and gives your entire body enough healthy fats, protein and minerals.
You might not always have enough time for a proper lunch and will be forced to improvise. However, this usually means choosing an easy option and having a burger, a pizza or something else not entirely healthy that will only disrupt your energy level and make you less prepared for the afternoon training session. Most top athletes visit the gym twice a day and only with a good lunch will you be ready to do so as well.
There are a number of healthy and fresh options out there, but one of the most delicious ones is an avocado Caprese chicken salad with balsamic vinaigrette. It is easy to make, quick to digest and includes a number of tasty flavors: from tomato, basil and mozzarella usually found in Caprese, to avocado, balsamic vinegar and dijon mustard. A word of advice – prepare the chicken and the salad separately and only mix them in the end.
The evening is when an athlete is usually busy playing matches or relaxing after a long day. Whichever is the case, they must not forget to eat something before they go to bed in order to keep their metabolism working and ensure that their muscles are well fed overnight. While people who are, for example, trying to lose weight, prefer staying away from dinner, athletes welcome it with open arms.
So, when it comes to dinner, you have to go light, yet nutritive, and, if possible, prepare it quickly without wasting too much time and energy. One such meal are paninis, sandwiches you turn into a special treat by grilling them. What you need to include is an abundance of vegetables like tomatoes, onions and lettuce, as well as lean meat – turkey, chicken or ham. And, of course, stay away from toppings and white bread.
Nutrition Equals Success
Nutrition is immensely valuable if you are an athlete, because it gives you strength, energy and focus, and a properly-balanced diet will make sure you have enough carbs, vitamins, proteins and fats. Do not be afraid to eat more – a good appetite is always a good sign.