YMCA Healthy Living Magazine, powered by n4 food and health (Spring 2014) - Page 18

FUEL BEFORE SPORT Sports Dietitians Australia provides these tips to help you understand the importance of adequately fuelling up before sport. o, you have set yourself a goal. A charity fun run? Perhaps your first marathon? Or maybe you’re just looking to improve your training stamina and performance? S The meal or snack eaten before training, or before your major event, provides a chance to tweak your ability to meet the nutritional goals ahead. The importance of this meal can range from a crucial top-up of fuel and fluid levels before a nutritionally challenging event, to a simple psychological boost from favourite menu choices or eating rituals. In all cases, your food and drink choices should leave you feeling comfortable and confident to start the event. You want to be able to perform at your best without experiencing either hunger or gut discomfort, and allow all of that hard work to pay off! A major item on the checklist for many endurance sports is to have adequate fuel in the form of carbohydrate (glycogen) stores in the muscles and liver. Glycogen is a critical fuel in the muscle, but the