Every successful person has something extra that sets them apart from the crowd. Endurance athletes are no different else they will not be able to go that extra mile. Apart from the timing of their meals, endurance athletes require nutrients that help them all through the process of preparing for races to the recovery period after competing at events. The nutrition basics include:
- Carbohydrates: The nutrition for endurance training begins with the intake of carbohydrates. Considering the high-energy requirements of endurance athletes, the dependence on lots of carbohydrates as a source of fuel does not come as a surprise. The need to replace muscle glycogen means that the right amount of carbohydrates has to be taken.
How much carbohydrate an endurance athlete takes depends on the intensity of training being undergone. As expected, more intake of carbohydrate is required when an endurance athlete is on heavy training compared to periods of low-intensity training.
- Fats: Another nutritional requirement that works just fine for endurance athletes are fats. They are a source of energy for periods when they are resting and do not train much. Fats are not only great as a source of energy during such periods, but they also offer proper immune function. Typically, they are taken in conjunction with carbohydrates.
To optimize fats, endurance athletes are expected to get between 25 to 30 percent of their daily calories from fats. This includes the options of vegetable oils, avocados, fatty fish, and so on. Taken in the right proportion, endurance athletes not only get the calories they need, but they also enjoy immune protection.
- Proteins: As with most athletes, the consumption of protein is necessary for the many benefits the nutrient offers. They are obviously not a primary source of energy for supporting long training sessions but their value cannot be overlooked.
Proteins are great because of the protection they offer to endurance athletes. They support the development of an athlete’s muscles as well as enhance the recovery process after races. It is important that the right quantity is taken daily in order to remain in top shape and be able to compete effectively.
Endurance athletes know that training alone cannot keep them at the top of their game. Taking the right nutrient in the right quantity daily also plays its role. The nutrients on this list ensure that the calories required are provided in addition to getting the right amount of proteins for muscle development and recovery.