The simplest dietary changes can have a profound effect on performance. Never underestimate the importance of a healthy diet on the ability of a swimmer to train and compete successfully. To be at the top of the sport requires high volumes of training, swimmers need to provide their bodies with the correct fuel to train and compete successfully.
Often parents say they have given their child ‘healthy food’ because they have a gala, however it is the daily diet that is essential to the swimmer as this fuels their body during the important training phase.
A balanced diet will provide all the essential vitamins minerals etc needed to repair muscles, make strong bones and supply the growing body especially during puberty. The swimmer will have the energy needed to train with less aches and pains. Diet is an area of your life that you have control over that can drastically improve your performance. Getting your diet right will give you an advantage over other swimmers. All top swimmers recognise the importance of a good diet.
If you find you are very tired, or finding it hard to get up in the mornings, if you pick up viruses, colds etc then have a really good look at your diet. Could you improve it? Look at the Swimmers weekly food menu. The foods recommended are very basic ones that are inexpensive, quick and easy to prepare and can be eaten by the whole family. If you are a vegetarian you can replace meat or chicken with quorn, pulses or nuts to make sure you get the required protein.
Food for refuelling
You must eat as soon as you can after training sessions so that your muscles are replenished as quickly and efficiently as possible. There is a 30 minute window of opportunity after training when your body is repairing; this is the best time to eat. Excellent foods for refuelling quickly are bananas, smoothies, tea cakes, scones and breakfast cereals. Eat healthy, be healthy. Remember a healthy swimmer is a happy swimmer; a happy swimmer is a fast swimmer!