How to Build a High-Performance Lunch for Athletes

Building a high-performance lunch for athletes is important because it helps them to perform at their best.

This blog article will tell you all about why certain foods matter and how much of them you should eat while building a high performance lunch for athletes, things like picking a protein, carbohydrate and fat also known as macronutrients along with explaining how many portions of each should be included in your diet if training more or less based on seasonal changes from this information this blog will give people enough knowledge to adequately feed themselves throughout the seasons.

Fitness and nutritionist experts say athletes should consume anywhere from 400 to 600 calories about an hour before exercising (not during), so be sure to time your meals accordingly. The following food options are calorie-dense but nutrient-rich—perfect for when you need high performance in the gym or on the field. If you’re looking for snacks in between bites of this hearty meal, keep reading for easy on-the-go options.

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  • Best bets: Lean protein (turkey, chicken, or tuna salad), whole grains like brown rice and quinoa, fruit (can prevent cramping and chewing keeps you focused)
  • Runner up: Nuts; high in healthy fats but be careful of sodium content if you’re headed to the gym after this meal.
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Crackers and cheese are a great way to get more fuel into your system before exercising—just watch portions since they’re pretty calorie-dense. For best results, pair them with some fresh fruit or veggies to balance out the macronutrients in your meal. Fitness and nutritionist experts suggest baby carrots because they are easy to eat without having to take time away from your workout.

  • Best bets: Mixed nuts, whole-grain crackers and cheese, carrots
  • Runner up: Dried fruits like figs and apricots; higher in calories than fresh fruit but also contain fiber and other nutrients that help regulate blood sugar levels (perfect for when you need a quick fuel during a workout)
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According to Fitness and nutritionist experts, honey is actually better than traditional syrup because it’s less processed and contains antioxidants. Your best bet is to opt for organic or raw varieties.

  • Best bets: Milk or soy milk with cereal, eggs and toast, oatmeal with skim milk
  • Runner up: String cheese; low-calorie and nutrient-dense snack that helps re-fuel your body after a workout (perfect if your around the 3:30 mark)

Gelato is actually lower in sugar than ice cream—plus it won’t weigh you down like the latter. High in fat but low in calories, this dessert will leave your taste buds satisfied and provide some extra fuel for your workout (just not too much since gelato has 150 to 300 more calories per cup). 

  • Best bet: Frullati –a gelato blend with bits of real fruit.
  • Runner up: Sorbet –made blended fresh fruit so it’s much lower in calories than gelatos

Adequate hydration is essential for optimal cellular function and cooling the body after exercise or physical exertion. Sports drinks can be used during training or competition if desired. The amount of carbohydrate replacement depends upon activity level and availability of food. It has been suggested that athletes should consume between 0.5 grams per pound (0.6 gms/kg) of body weight per day while engaging in strenuous training (>60 minutes). For a 200-lb person this would equate to 100 grams of carbohydrate replacement. Sports drinks provide an easily absorbed source of carbohydrate for refueling the muscles during training or competition. A general guide for athletes would be 30-60 grams of carbohydrate per hour of exercise.