For Serious Athletes, What You Need to Know About Achieving Peak Athletic Performance
With the 2016 summer Olympics upon us, we have some of the world’s finest athletes as role models of health, strength and perseverance. These athletes, while certainly in tip-top shape, understand that when it comes to achieving success in their sport, it’s all about balance of the body and mind. Whether you’re Olympics-bound or an amateur athlete, there are more than just work-outs to consider if you want to take your sports performance to the next level.
At Shakthi Health and Wellness Center, we have developed a leading-edge sports performance program designed to meet the specialized needs of the serious athlete. Our board-certified medical team and experienced athletic trainers help athletes of all ages and all levels achieve their performance goals.
As part of our mission to help athletes achieve success, wellness and balance, we’ve developed a three-part series of sports performance tips and information.
Part I: You Are What You Eat ? Essential Elements of Nutrition for Top Sports Performance
Nutrition is one of the most essential components of an athletes performance and an integral part of our sports performance program. Before we even begin assessing strength, work-outs and endurance, we look at an individual’s diet. Is an athelte’s diet sufficient to support intense training and overall exertion?
We look at the nutrients a person is taking in daily to ensure there are no deficiencies. For example, is the athlete eating a good balance of wholesome carbohydrates and fats as well as lean proteins to maintain muscle mass, Is the individual maintaining good hydration, Are supplements needed to help the individual maintain their overall health during intense training? We offer IV nutrient therapy for replacing lost stores of essential vitamins and minerals which also helps the body recover from intensive training.
A well balanced diet and the proper nutrient intake is not only crucial for maintaining top performance, but also to help avoid muscle cramping, spasms, fatigue and burn-out. Our team of specialists work with athletes to assess diet as well as perform tests that can identify nutritional deficiencies that may be hindering the body’s performance level. Our specialists develop specific and individualized nutrition plans to ensure continued health throughout training and competition.
3 Tips to Keep Athletes in Optimal Condition Before, During and After Training
Serious athletes need to develop good diet and nutrition habits to keep their bodies fueled. Our sports performance team has a number of important recommendations for overall athletic wellness:
- Before and during work outs, make sure to stay well hydrated. This includes drinking plenty of water before any work out begins and staying hydrated throughout training with a combination of water and a sports drink with electrolytes. Maintaining hydration also helps ward off debilitating muscle cramps and spasms.
- Post work-out: There is certainly a difference in nutritional needs for an endurance athlete versus as weight lifter, for example; our trainers specialize in helping each individual match their nutrient intake with their effort level. This includes assessing the proper carbohydrate-protein ratio based on an athlete’s goals and training regimen.
- Rest and recovery: Make sure to incorporate rest days into your training to allow the body to adequately recover in between work-outs. In addition, every athlete needs sufficient sleep for optimal sports performance. Sleep helps the body repair and recover after an intense training. At Shakthi, we work with athletes on a variety of body and mind recovery methods including yoga and meditation. Yoga is an excellent way to help over-exerted muscles recover; the stretching and lengthening of the muscles during yoga has amazing benefits for the athletic body. Swimming is another low impact way to help the muscles recover. The goal of the recovery period is the prevention of injury as well as over-exertion that leads to fatigue.
Learn more about achieving top sports performance in Part II: When Sports Performance Falls: What To Do To Get Back in the Game.
Dr. Jyothi and Sudhir Rao have partnered with 368 Athletics Performance Training Center to deliver personalized programs for athletes? needs and goals. Learn more about Shakthi?s Sports Performance Program and how our team can take your health and your game to the highest level.