Swimmers Diet: How Adapting Swimmers Nutrition Improves Health
For regular swimmers, swimming is not just an activity for filling spare time. On the contrary, it's a way of life. The feelings of joy and revitalisation that come together with swimming are becoming addictive elements of swimmers' daily lives. What is most important is the health factor.
Swimming boosts health, improving drastically the fitness levels as well as the endurance and general well-being.
Nevertheless, the swimming activity must come with balanced and appropriate nutrition. Eating carelessly could reduce the positive effects of swimming and even jeopardise health. Keep reading to find out some nutrition "secrets" and what you should take under consideration for achieving the best possible results.
What is The Best Diet for Swimmers?
Probably you have heard the notion that swimmers can eat whatever they want because they burn too many calories when swimming. Well, this is a myth. Of course, every case is different, and it all depends on the levels of training. Ian Thorpe's diet, to use a striking example, could not be the same with the diet of an amateur swimmer. In both cases, however, diet is adjusted accordingly.
What to Eat Before Swimming
Organising your diet before swimming and after swimming is significant for achieving optimal results, ensuring high energy levels, and getting full health benefits. The foods that are highly recommended for eating before swimming are the following:
- Wholegrain breads
- Unsalted nuts
- Porridge Oats
Make sure that you eat at least one hour before any swimming session. Swimming burns a great number of calories, so you need to make sure that you have all the energy you need.
If your timetable allows you to swim only in the early morning, you need to follow a different diet, as you won't have one or two hours available for digesting the food. In such cases, it is highly recommended that you choose to consume one of the following:
- A large banana
- Energy bar
- Cereal bar
- Jellied sweets
- A sports drink
What to Eat After Swimming
Watching out what you eat after swimming is of equal importance to what you eat before swimming. Many people, especially beginners, don't pay too much attention to what they eat after swimming. Such ignorance could be very tricky for both physical fitness and long term health status. Because of the many calories we burn when swimming, it's normal that we feel very hungry at the end of each swim session. Eating carelessly could make us even heavier than we were before having started swimming. Especially for night training, we shall be very cautious, because eating heavily at night time should be avoided.
The best after swimming eating options include:
- Baked sweet potato
- Fish protein bars
Keeping a Healthy Diet is Vital for Optimising Your Swimming Training
Swimming is a high-calorie burning sports activity. Therefore, keeping a balanced and healthy diet is vital for accomplishing the best results. Moreover, looking at the broader picture, sustaining and maintaining a healthy way of life, is the best "investment" a person can make. Health is the most precious human asset. The impact of poor nutrition on your health can be devastating on a long-term scale, regardless of our swim habits.
Neglecting the benefits of a balanced diet, when being in swimming classes or sessions, would result in both poor performance and health burden. Perfect planning prevents bad performance, so you need to be aware of the needs of your body before proceeding to the swimming training.
Important Nutritional Tips You Know What You Need During Your Swimming
Swimming demands high levels of energy. Nobody wants to feel exhausted in the middle of a swimming session, because of low energy. Acquiring the vitamins that your body needs to respond to the increased energy consumption, is very significant. B Vitamins (and especially vitamins B-1 and B-2) help the human body to produce energy. At the same time, they affect the enzymes that influence the heart, nerves, and muscle functions, preventing the symptoms of tiredness, muscle cramps, and loss of appetite.
Additionally, your body will need Vitamin C, which acts as an antioxidant, as well as minerals like iron and calcium, for carrying oxygen to all cells and improving bone health and muscle function.
You should also consider the following useful tips:
- Drink lots of water
- Eat food which contains carbohydrates and protein
- Have a rich breakfast every morning
Drinking lots of water prevents dehydration. Our bodies lose a lot of water through sweat and urine, and they need to restore such losses. When swimming, you should drink water before, during, and after your swimming session, in order to avoid dehydration. You don't need to feel thirsty, just make sure that your body is hydrated at all times.
Carbohydrates provide the human body with the energy required for any exercise session and are a central part of the diets of most athletes on all sports.
The same applies to proteins, which function as "builders" of new tissues in bodies. They are essential for high energy-consuming energy sports and are taken by most professional athletes in all sports. However, the amount that shall be taken depends on a number of factors (energy consumed, bodyweight, etc.). You should refer to your personal trainer about this issue because any protein that is not needed by the body is stored as fat.
Finally, a healthy breakfast can boost your energy throughout the day and be a strong health factor, replenishing the glycogen levels and fueling the muscles with energy.
The combined effects of swimming and healthy eating can be impressive. Because swimming works out the whole body, it is fundamental that the required energy is available. Combining swimming and healthy nutrition are great indicators of good health. Their positive impact and the variety of swimming styles can make them a daily habit that can transform each of our days to a happy and healthy experience!