The start of a new year can be a great time to check-in with yourself and make sure that your daily habits align with your goals and values.
This can include taking a look at how and what you eat and if your dietary habits are performance-oriented, or if they have formed out of familiarity.
See below for five ways athletes can think about nutrition in 2021:
1. See nutrition as an opportunity
Avoid just eating for the sake of it. Make food choices based on how it may help to optimise your health or performance.
2. Align nutrition focus to your daily training and performance goals
This might mean having a different meal plan for every day of the week to match your training schedule, and/or having a different meal plan for different phases of your training across the year e.g. eating during strength-focused block compared to a speed-focused block.
3. Be proactive, not reactive
Don’t make nutrition an afterthought. Be one step ahead. This might mean having high quality meal and/or snack options available at all times, as opposed to searching for food after you’ve realised you’re hungry.
4. Own your decisions
If you have a goal, take ownership of the process involved in reaching it, including utilising nutrition as a performance advantage.
5. Run your own race
There is no single diet that will match the needs of every single person. Just because one athlete is successful at their chosen event or sport, it does not mean the way they eat will be appropriate for you. A high performance diet is one that is specific to the needs and preferences of the individual.
For advice around tailoring your diet, speak to an Accredited Sports Dietitian who can educate and create a nutrition plan to help you get to where you want to be.