Athletes aim to take food, nutrition and dieting far more serious than their competition, all for any advantage possible.
Athletes all over the world train day in and day out in their sport in order to gain an advantage over the competition. Along with the tough physical training some athletes endure and mental preparation for their sport, many athletes also intensely focus on their diet and daily nutrition intake.
Seattle Pacific University’s womens basketball team score leader for the 2018 -2019 season, Riley Evans, stressed how much healthy eating meant while enduring athletic training.
“Yes, I would try to eat pretty well.” Evans said. “Especially in fall before the season starts and in spring it’s important because we’re doing so much conditioning, weights and basketball. You have to fuel your body in the right way to get through all those things.”
Evans said she would undergo hours and hours of training every week all in order to top the next competition coming her way. How she ate significantly affected how she was able to respond during that time she spent under pressure.
“Eating the right things after a big workout is particularly important and our coaches would always emphasize that,” she said.
“I think, overall trying to eat healthily is so undervalued. It affects so much, and I can always notice a difference in my energy levels when I’ve been eating in the right way.”
Evans’ coaches would also focus the attention on their nutrition, she said.
“They never really told us not to eat certain things, but they emphasized the importance of eating protein and good carbs. Especially during season our head coach was all about being super hydrated. I know I felt like I had more energy and focus when I was hydrated.” The women’s basketball team during the regular season competed twice every week. When the team wasn’t tussling with rivals, practice was in full swing. Practice consisted of weight training, cardio training, drills, etc.
Because of all of that, along with a full load of classes and the stresses that come along with life, Evans highlighted how much her energy means to her. She said she focused on eating right and eating often.
Evans is no different than many athletes all over the globe who are eating to be better than their competition, individuals such as Jon Call, who eats an average just over 100 pounds of chicken breast a week to remain in tiptop bodybuilding shape, or Michael Phelps, who prepared for the 2008 Olympics by consuming about 12,000 calories a day.
“Now that I’m not an athlete I definitely don’t feel as hungry just because I’m not burning through the same number of calories,” Evans said. “I also know that I can’t eat as much junk because I won’t be burning it off as much anymore.”
The Falcons and athletes everywhere are reminded about how important the food they consume is in moments of competition, training or in daily life.