We have talked before about the importance of nutrition and its role on any Lakeland cheerleading athlete. Cheerleading is a sport that needs a lot of physical effort on the side of its athletes, and it’s hard for athletes to maintain a certain degree of physical activity without the right kind of fuel for their bodies. It’s important to keep a regular fitness regimen, but even if you have the best fitness regimen out there, if you’re eating fast food and drinking soda everyday, your body is going to find it difficult to keep up.
Whether you’re a cheerleader, or the mother to a dedicated cheerleader, it’s important that you understand what food is healthy for the body and provides a balanced amount of nutrients. This balance helps athletes perform better and gives them the energy that they need to carry out their routines. Three balanced meals a day is essential to any cheerleading athlete to maintain the number of needed calories and nutrients that they’ll need to function, especially with their amount of physical activity.
When the cheer season rolls around, training is going to be as vigorous as ever, and cheer athletes are going to need those nutrients. While it might seem that all they need are the nutrients from their three square meals, you have to take into consideration what time cheer practice is going to start. Practice usually starts after school lets out, which means that it’s been several hours since these athletes have eaten.
It’s highly recommended that cheerleaders eat a healthy snack before heading over to cheer practice, as the physical activity combined with a lack of food may cause them to feel dizzy and lethargic. When preparing healthy snacks for the cheerleader on-the-go, like their meals, the snacks must be properly balanced in terms of nutrition.
The recommended combination of nutrients include the right kind of carbohydrates combined with a minimal amount of fat. The carbohydrates you choose must be digested quickly, with the right amount of protein. Too much fat and fiber can make it difficult to reach the optimum level of energy needed, so it’s best to keep these at the right amount. Snacking must be done about forty-five minutes before practice starts so that the body has enough time to digest and process the food.
Some great snack ideas can include: homemade trail mix, some yogurt with granola and honey, an apple and some peanut butter, fruits like apples, bananas, or grapes, a sandwich made of whole wheat bread and a protein like turkey or chicken. There is no end to the number of food combinations for snack prep for a Lakeland cheerleading athlete. As long as it’s properly balanced, it’ll give them the energy that they need to perform at their absolute best.