Something I wish I knew in high school, and even as an athlete in college, was the importance of my diet.
People say “just eat clean”!
When I heard that in high school I was like, “OK, no candy”. When I got to college I thought “OK, no fast food”. When I became an adult, it was "I’ll mix in a salad couple times a week". It never crossed my mind how important the foods I ate were to my mental and physical performance. If I were to go back and tell myself a few things to prioritize nutritionally, they would be:
- Eat more protein- Especially as an athlete. When you are strength training multiple days a week and then going into a 4-5 month season of play, you have to put protein at the top of your list. Without it, you won’t grow into your full potential. Add in chicken, eggs, beef, turkey, or fish at every meal and you will see massive results. Your body is a temple and protein is the building block for that temple to get strong and sturdy. 30 grams of protein per meal- MINIMUM!
- Cut out added sugar- You are probably taking in more than 30 grams of added sugar everyday, OR MORE! You never know how much added sugar you are actually taking in if you don’t look at the labels on your foods. Be aware of these sugars because they will hijack your taste buds and destroy your gains! Tasty…yes, but worth it…no. (Moderation is key).
- Get more sleep... please- Staying up late watching movies, or talking to girls was a staple of my high school and college nights. Little did I know this was affecting my performance in the classroom and on the field! Sleep is key to success. Invest in a good comfy bed. Shut off your phone at least 30 mins before bed, and get at least eight hours. You will be more successful!
These three things are what I would go back and explain to myself. Athletes and coaches take note and relay this to your team, it will be a guaranteed game changer!