Nutrition for female teenage athletes
NUTRITION AND TEENS
Back in September I had the pleasure of hosting these cutie-pies in my kitchen for a nutrition seminar. We all know teens don’t always show the most enthusiasm towards anything labeled “healthy,” but I must say these girls came with great questions, positive attitudes and a genuine eagerness to learn more about eating a nutritious and balanced diet for their active lifestyles. And by active, I mean dancing anywhere from 10-14 hours per week after school, at school sporting events, and dance competitions. I’m exhausted just thinking about it! With my eyes glazed over after learning the ins and outs of daily dance team life, I reminisced about my own days in high school running track, doing schoolwork, and of course social hour with friends. (Oh my God we must have eaten at Wendy’s every day in my high school career, I’m shocked I didn’t weigh 800 lbs!) If I only would have known how much stronger and faster I would have been if I’d have paid a little more attention to what I was eating! Hopefully I caught this group early enough that they won’t make the same mistakes. (Pssst…yes I do workshops, connect with me if you have a group you would like me to speak to.)
- Baby steps are A-Okay! Small progress towards eating well is better than no progress
- Small behavioral changes lead to big long lasting life changes
- Start helping out at home a little more with meal planning
- 4-5 balanced meals/day making sure to choose one item from each column of your macro sheet handout
- Eat breakfast before you go out the door in the morning…every morning.
- Complex carbs are our friends!
- Try to avoid excess sugar – I don’t believe it is the devil and I realize teenagers are teenagers but please be cautious with your consumption
- Imitation sugar mimics real sugar in your body and will cause you to crave more in the long run.
- Just say NO to diet sodas.
- You only get one body so treat it right
- Think of food as fuel not a reward or a punishment
These girls we absolutely awesome and I hear from coach Jackie that they have already made great progress towards their healthy lifestyle change. Bravo ladies! Know a teenager that might benefit from this article? PLEASE SHARE IT! Know a group of athletes that need some nutrition direction? Let me know.
Remember, it’s YOU vs. YOU!
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