What you eat several days before an endurance activity affects performance. The food you eat on the morning of a sports competition can ward off hunger, keep blood sugar levels adequate, and aid hydration. Try to avoid eating high-protein or high-fat foods on the day of an event since this can put stress on your kidneys and take a long time to digest.
To perform at your highest level, follow these general nutrition guidelines before an event:
- Eat a meal high in carbohydrates.
- Eat solid foods 3 to 4 hours before an event. Drink liquids 2 to 3 hours before an event.
- Choose easily digestible foods, rather than fried or high-fat foods.
- Avoid sugary foods and drinks within one hour of the event.
- Drink enough fluids to ensure hydration. A good guideline to follow is: Drink 20 oz. of water 1 to 2 hours before exercise and an additional 10 to 15 oz. within 15 to 30 minutes of the event. Replenishing fluids lost to sweat is the primary concern during an athletic event. Drink 3 to 6 ounces of water or diluted sports drink every 10 to 20 minutes throughout competition.
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