It takes more than healthy eating and regular exercise to build a great basketball player. Your body relies on just the right fuel to build the healthy muscle you need to be at your peak. That's why pro basketball players know protein counts.
But what exactly makes up the ideal diet for a top athlete? Let's look at the nutrients you need to be at your best.
Your body uses water not only to hydrate your workout but also to build and repair muscles. Your muscle tissue is, itself, up to seventy-five percent water. Keep your muscles healthy and growing with adequate hydration.
Aim to drink about eight glasses of water each day. Before workout or a game, drink two glasses to start off well hydrated. During a big workout or a game, drink a glass every thirty minutes to replenish lost fluids.
You know protein is important, but are you consuming enough? You should be aiming for one to one-and-a-half grams of protein for each pound you weight.
To make sure you are getting the protein you need, make sure every meal contains at least one source of protein, including eggs, chicken, fish, and lean meat.
Protein is important for muscle healing and recovery. Make sure you carry protein bars with you so you can eat one within thirty minutes after a workout or game. This ensures you stay at your very best.
While protein is important, don't neglect your carbohydrates. Carbs give your body the fuel it needs to run, providing the energy you burn for workouts, games, and daily life. So on heavy workout days or days you have a big game, maximize your carb intake. But then on off-days or light workout days, you'll want to consume fewer carbs.
So, what's a healthy diet look like for the training basketball player? Balanced meals and snacks that include protein and carbs, and of course, plenty of water. Breakfasts of eggs and toast will do the trick, for example, as will lunches starring a sandwich with a protein like tuna or chicken. Dinners with another protein, such as fish or a lean meat, and pasta or rice, will round out your day's meals quite nicely. And as for snacks, don't forget to keep them healthy, too! Try some nuts and dried fruits, or a Promax bar and cheese slices.
As you can see, proper nutrition is the key to success on and off the court. But the athlete's diet is anything but boring. What are your favorite meals and snacks to fuel your success? Share them with us by connecting with us on our social channels!