Well, we all know how important it is to fuel your body before a big rugby match, however it’s amazing how many people go about it the completely wrong way.
Some people say it’s all about getting those carbs in as a source of energy, whilst others believe protein is the key component…
The obvious facts are these...in order for the human body to maintain sufficient energy levels, we need to give our body a sufficient energy supply - it’s where that energy comes from that confuses some people.
With regards to timing, you want to be giving yourself enough time for whatever you eat to have been digested as this is when the fuel tank becomes full and you have optimum levels of energy.
Here’s some ideal pre and post match meals that’ll ensure you’ve got oodles of energy before the game and the best possible recovery after it.
Wholemeal Toast, Peanut Butter, Banana and Cinnamon
This is a brilliant pre-match meal as it gives your body a great balance of both complex and simple carbs (these are your BFF when it comes to pre-match nutrition).
It’s a great combination as it means your energy will be released slowly throughout your period of exercise, which decreases the chance of a burnout. Add a dash of cinnamon, as the spice has been proven to provide extra energy and improve brain functionality.
Oatmeal with Fresh Fruit
When it comes to exercising, oatmeal is bae (sorry, couldn’t resist).
When you eat it before a match, like a good team mate, it will stick by you through the rough and smooth, and gradually add sugar to your bloodstream so your stamina levels remain high. However, it can get stodgy, and so to avoid becoming dehydrated, add fruit to your oatmeal to give your meal increased fluid levels.
Grilled Chicken and Mixed Vegetables
It’s simple; in order for your body to properly enter recovery mode, it needs a dish dense in nutrients. From the chicken you’ll gain lean protein and the right amount of carbs to refuel your body, and the veggies will help you keep ticking over.
Vegetable Omelette with Avocado
This has goodness written all over it.
We all know how good a source of protein eggs are but why not mix it up and chuck in tonnes of fantastic vegetables to pack your body with nutrients, in order to recovery effectively.
The Avocado will provide you with your monosaturated fats (good fats) and also boost your body's antioxidants. A great post match scran.
Salmon and Sweet Potato
As well as the amazing protein content within salmon, it also contains protein molecules that assist in reducing insulin levels and helping your joints recover. Sweet potatoes are a complex carb and are fantastic at restoring glycogen levels, which will be depleted after a tough match.
These are all great meals to consume before and after a big match, so let us know how you get on with them! You never know, they may be the difference in making the try line or being caught...