If you’re a soccer player, you already know that eating the right foods before a game can make a huge difference in your performance.
But what should you eat?
Well, if you’re like most people, you probably don’t think about what to eat before your training or match; you just grab a snack and head out the door. But, if you want to play your best, it’s worth taking a few minutes to think about what foods will fuel your performance.
We’ve put together this handy guide of 10 foods to help you choose the best pre-game meal for optimum performance. So whether you’re looking for an energizing breakfast, snack, or post-game recovery meal, we’ve got you covered.
Grab your cleats and your water bottle, and let’s get ready to kick some goals!
List of 10 Foods to Fuel Your Performance
1) Sweet Potatoes
A rich source of beta-carotene and vitamin C, sweet potatoes will help improve immunity and reduce fatigue.
These fruits are loaded with potassium, which helps maintain electrolyte balance while playing. Of course, these make a great pre-session snack because you can grab it and go.
3) Scrambled egg with avocado
Scrambled eggs with avocado alone or on some wholegrain bread. You can eat protein-rich scrambled eggs with avocado for a dose of healthy fats.
Oatmeal is an excellent source of protein, carbohydrates, and fiber, oatmeal will provide energy and make you feel full longer.
The perfect snack to grab on the go before training. Yogurt is rich in probiotics and can help improve gut health and regulate digestion.
6) Quinoa Salad with Lentils & greens
A good choice for vegetarians or those who want the energy, nutrition, and a filling meal without feeling lethargic afterward.
Delicious, portable, and packed with nutrients such as fiber, vitamins A & C.
8) Fruit Smoothie
Strawberries are a great addition to any smoothie because they’re loaded with antioxidants.
9) Oatmeal bar or cereal bar
Great for on-the-go fuel before practice; make sure to choose one that’s low in sugar or sugar-free, so you do not experience that awful crash after your sugar rush!
10) Protein shake with dried fruit (raisins/cranberries)
Great for any type of athlete, especially if you’re on the go or in need of something fast to consume. If you are in a rush, prepare your shake on its own and pack your own trail mix with these naturally sweet and low-calorie snacks!
Why Is Protein Important When Deciding What To Eat Before Soccer Training?
When preparing your own pre-training snack, try to stick with foods that are known to be excellent sources of lean protein. Protein provides energy for playing soccer and helps to build lean muscle while training.
Proteins can be found in meats, eggs, dairy products, and certain vegetables. Protein powder supplements are a great way to add protein to your diet if you’re unable to get enough from natural sources.
A simple shake with milk or water combined with whey protein isolate powder or vegan soy/pea protein is an easy way to consume more than 40 grams of high-quality protein.
What Role Do Carbs Play?
Another thing to consider is slow-release carbs, which can help you to play soccer better for longer. Foods that are low in sugar and high in fiber are best, such as wholegrain cereals, pasta, brown rice, oats, or sweet potatoes.
Get Ahead Of The Game With Superfoods…
Superfoods: What Are They?
Superfoods have been getting a lot of attention in the past few years. You have more than likely heard of them, but just what are they?
Superfoods are foods and drinks that can provide a lot of health benefits, including lowering the risk of heart disease, lowering blood pressure, and improving the health of your skin, hair, and nails. The most popular superfoods include blueberries, broccoli, and salmon.
You can also think of superfoods as being super-packed with nutrients: a single serving has significant amounts of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, or it contains a lot of powerful antioxidants.
The best time to eat these foods is 1-2 hours before a game, as they do take time to digest and get into position!
As well as providing energy for your soccer match, it’s important to drink plenty of fluids before and during the game too. Staying hydrated will help you play better by reducing fatigue and giving you an edge on the opposition.
Finally, don’t forget about vitamin C. It’s needed for bone health and collagen production, so eating foods like oranges or grapefruit can help keep your bones strong.
What To Eat After Soccer Training?
After a grueling soccer practice, there are a few things you should try and do to help your body recover. Eating a nutritious meal will help your muscles rebuild and help you burn fat to power up your performance in the next practice or game.
Many players assume you can just eat anything because the training is already complete – this cannot be further from the truth.
Take professional Premier League soccer player Fernando Torres, for example. Torres has been a keen follower of sports nutritionist Mike Dolce. This has kept his weight under check and his energy levels on a high.
He is also a fan of quick-recovery protein shake, which helps to repair muscles and provide more energy!
When you eat after training there are 3 key things to look out for:
- The carb ratio
- The amount of sugar in your meal, and;
- If it is an appropriate amount of protein.
|A well-balanced recovery meal will contain:|
Some examples of a well-balanced training recovery meal
- Greek yogurt with fruit
- Tuna sandwich on whole-wheat bread
- Sweet potato mixed with roasted vegetables.
The most important thing to remember is that your body needs fuel and time to rest after training so give it what it needs!