WFC Rangers (Whatcom Rangers)


    Nutrition for Players of the Game

    Lynette Reilly ACE, AKC & Brian J. Weeda, MS, PT, AT, TPI, USSF D, NCSSA National

    A puzzle has many pieces. At the Professional and Collegiate levels Nutrition is recognized as a very large piece of the puzzle that so intricately unites with other pieces to form the 'Complete Player of the Game'. The Ranger Club strives for excellence in all pieces of the puzzle.

    Nutrition. ' The days of 7-11 36oz Mountain Dew and a few jelly doughnuts prior to practice are over - and this makes me very sad' Brian J. Weeda (from the 'Old Days' volume 2 ). Well… we all need to evolve and progress - embrace scientifically supported nutritional facts.

    Since I am so focused on the Mt. Dew and Jelly Doughnuts as the complete nutritional guide to kicking it into high gear on the pitch….. I requested a more educated individual do the research and provide guidance to our club players - Let me introduce Lynette Reilly whom has no idea of the nutritional benefits of Jelly Doughnuts!!! Lynette and I have reviewed the literature and will co-author this article. We will provide a brief review and a summation of the recommendations. For those that would like to dig deeper we have provided links to excellent sources on Nutrition for Athletes. 2

    Parents and Players

    Nutrition equals energy. It is a priority in the upper levels of all performance athletes. It provides an edge. Does your body have the fuel to perform in the last 30 min of the game as it did in the first 30? Does it have the energy reserves to pull from when it is the 5th game in a 2 day tournament?

    Do you know how much & what type of Nutrition to consume if only an hour exists prior to game 2 of the tournament? Did you know risk of injury is higher for athletes when energy stores are depleted?

    THE MASTER FUEL - Carbohydrates

    Carbohydrates are the most efficiently broken down (metabolized) food substance and can provide energy to your system rapidly when needed and over time if required. The extra store of glycogen (C6H12O6) in the muscles and liver as a result of a rich carbohydrate diet is called upon by the working muscles and organs during demand. When your system can call upon these stores of glucose you can perform and stay mentally focused for longer periods of time. Studies have shown this to be particularly important in stop and go sports ….. does that sound like Soccer?

    For a Soccer Athlete 60-70% of the caloric intake should come from carbohydrates.

    Carbohydrate Intake BEFORE, DURING, and AFTER Soccer


     The Preference is to consume your meal 4 hours before the Game and should include 1.5 grams of Carbohydrates per pound of body weight.

     If you are limited on time and can only eat your meal 2.5 hours prior to Game then the intake should be 1.0 grams of Carbohydrates per pound of body weight.

     If you are eating an hour before kickoff then .5 grams of Carbohydrates per pound of body weight.


    One hour between games:

    o Obtain Carbohydrates that are in a liquid form - sports drinks.

    o If solid food is needed then focus on oranges, watermelon, cantaloupe, peaches, pears, applesauce, or bananas.

    Two to Three hours between games:

    o Solid foods can be eaten as that the digestive system has time to work:

     Bagels, hot or cold cereal with non-fat milk, English Muffins - along with fruit such as bananas, apples, oranges, peaches or pears.

    o Drink plenty of fluid - avoid carbonated and caffeine drinks. (So…Lynette - doe that include Mt. Dew???)

    Four or more hours between games:

    o Full meal with guidelines as indicated above.

    DURING THE GAME (From a Carbohydrate perspective)

     Consume 6-12 Oz of sports drink with 6-8% of Carbohydrate concentrate for every 15-10 Min of Playing Time. Avoid Carbohydrate drinks with a 10% or higher concentrate.


     .65 grams of Carbohydrates per pound of body weight consumed within 30 min. post game.

    o Cereal with non-fat milk

    o Nugo Bar

    o Fruit & non-fat yogurt

    o Pita & Hummus

    o Trail Mix

    o Chocolate non-fat milk

    o Banana with peanut butter.

     This should be followed by a Carbohydrate bias meal two hours later.


     Post Game 7-15 grams of protein should be consumed with your Carbohydrate meal. This will help reduce muscle break down.


     Players should consume 20 to 30 percent of their calories from fat in a normal meal.

    o Dairy Products - cheese, whole milk, sour-cream, and ice cream (YES!! - Weeda)

    o Processed foods - chips, crackers, granola bars, French fries

    o Cooked meats and fish

    o Nuts, avocados

    o Jelly Doughnuts (shhhhh - don't tell anyone)


    Losing as little as 2% of total body weight can negatively affect athletic performance. Performance can be affected by as much as 30%. Hydration starts the day before a normal game and 3 days before a big tournament. Thirst is NOT an accurate indicator of how much fluid an athlete has lost - actually dehydration is already setting in when you feel thirsty!

     Volume of blood pumped through the heart with each beat decreases when you are dehydrated.

    o Muscles do not receive sufficient O2

    o Early exhaustion can set in.

     Fluid consumed during hot temperatures should contain a small amount of sodium and electrolytes.

     The player should drink 10-16 Oz of cold fluid 15-20 min before kickoff.

     Drink 4-8 Oz of fluid for every 20 min of exercise demand.

     AVOID drinks that are carbonated or have caffeine.

    For further study see suggestions and links below

    Lynette Reilly & Brian J. Weeda


     Natural Vitamin and Minerals

     Supplements


    1. 'Food Guide For Soccer' - Gloria Averbuch and Nancy Clark

    2. 'TrueSport Nutrition Guide' - USADA