The old saying: “You are what you eat,” is very true. As an athlete, you have a responsibility to yourself and the team to take care of your body. Here are some tips to help keep your body and mind functioning well during the season.
Food: Eat healthy. Fruits, vegetables, etc… Stay away from fast food. Your body needs good energy to operate at a high level. Eating right gives you more energy and in turn helps you keep your mind operating better also. Make sure you eat before practices and games. Not too much, but something to give your body fuel to work with. Also, eat with enough time before the practice to let it settle in. Especially during preseason, make sure you eat plenty as your body will be working very hard.
Fluids: Make sure you keep your body hydrated. Drink plenty of water before, during and after practice and games. Water is the best thing for you. Stay away from soda and tea cooler. They break your body down. Water, Gatorade, and natural juices are the best thing.
Rest: Getting enough rest before and after practices will be a key. Your body needs time to recuperate, and rest/sleep is when it works its best. Get to bed the night before at a decent time.
Hygiene: Keep yourself clean and as dry as possible. After practice take a quick shower and get into clean-dry clothes. This will help keep your body from adopting any unwanted fungi! Bring a change of clothes to wear after practice, sandals, etc…
Preventing Injuries: Ice soreness after practice. Make sure your coach is aware of any problems you are having. Make sure you see the trainer at the beginning of the sense of an oncoming injury so that we can help prevent it from putting you out of commission. It is so important to pay attention to all of the above. You may feel fine now, but over time, with all the hard work and intensity of the season, your body will break down if you don’t take care of it.