Dec 5th, 13. Injured cyclist Eddie Dawkins will take his place in the team sprint combination ... read more
Dec 5th, 13. World Championship multi medallist Linda Villumsen headlines a strong woman’s field in this ... read more
Dec 5th, 13. Pro cycling team, Lotto Belisol is busy preparing the 2014 season. With ten riders ... read more
Treat food for cyclists
We all like treat foods, but do you think about your consumption of these and how it may affect your performance? By Sarah Burkhart Nutrionalist.
We all know (and like) the treat foods, chocolates, lollies, cakes, slices, potato chips but do you think about your consumption of these and how it may affect your performance?
A balanced diet is just that – BALANCED! There is no reason why you can't enjoy having these things in your diet but it's getting it balanced which is the key to a healthy lifestyle and optimal performance.
There are issues with treat foods for athletes:
1. Treat foods are generally high in fat. Excess fat will be stored as body fat if you don't burn it off. Overeating treats can contribute to unwanted weight gain – potentially slowing you down on the hills!
2. Treat foods generally don't contain many nutrients (I know you are saying but dark chocolate has antioxidants!) so they contribute energy without much goodness.
3. Including treat foods can displace healthier options. If you are filling up on cakes, high fat muffins, and soft drinks you won't be able to fit as much fruit, veges, wholegrains and water in.
So how many treats a week can you have?
It is a personal issue but if you don't have any weight issues you can probably get away with 3 – 4 treats a week assuming you have a small portion size.
If you are watching your weight you are best to stick to 1 – 2 treats a week. Best of all would be none but you need to enjoy these foods – if you completely restrict treat foods, chances are you'll end up wanting it so much more, give in and eat too much of it!
Remembering your portion size is important if you are having a treat – you can use the following as examples of treat portions:
Remember to enjoy your treats when you have them but don't go over board!
About Sarah Burkhart....
Sarah is a Sports Nutritionist who is known for her practical and realistic approach to improving performance and getting results with athletes from recreational to elite international level. She has a BSc majoring in Human Nutrition and Physiology, and has just completed a MSc in Human Nutrition.
Tweet Follow @roadcycling
Support RoadCycling.co.nz Advertisers