Wellness Wednesday: Game Plan

Welcome to Wellness Wednesday, where we discuss all things fitness and nutrition.

With the CWC’s coming to a close today, I thought that it would be a perfect opportunity to discuss proper game plan dieting. Many of us all know that with every well structured game plan is a well structured diet plan. Our bodies run like machines; the machine needs gas, oil or batteries in order to perform properly and deliver the results desired. Just like the machine, our body needs sustenance to perform properly. Therefore the body needs fuel before the round to kick in, food during the round to sustain it, and food after the round to recover. However, what you put into your body will ultimately affect your outcome.

Where do you begin you ask? From the very beginning, breakfast time.
The trick here is gaining the carbohydrates that you need to perform well but not eating a lot of food to get there. Having a full stomach is not ideal while making that turn at each hole. As with any sport, powering up with a carb-filled meal several hours (3-4) before performance is essential. If the event is in the early morning make sure to eat a meal the night prior that is loaded with carbohydrates (i.e. spaghetti or any pasta dish; recipe featured below), and eat a light snack an hour before the event. According to Livestrong.com, The Royal Canadian Golf Association cites that consuming 140 to 330 gram of carbs can enhance athletic performance. Therefore, solid pre-round snacks are vital.

Pre-round snack choices can include: fresh fruit, oatmeal with berries and nuts, cereal, or an English muffin. Make sure that the snack you are eating is something you are familiar with and is tolerable!

What to eat during the round:
Chances are during the middle of your game you will have burned off a couple hundred calories. Naturally, your body will feel weaker and will want more fuel to continue on. First, water is vital! Livestrong.com suggests that losing more than 3 percent of your body weight in sweat could weaken your performance. Therefore, hydration is key while golfing under the sun (which we California locals do quite often!). Golfer and writer for GottaGoGolf, Cheryl Stroter, recommended having a snack at the 5th and 14th holes. Stroter believes that those two holes are the perfect in between holes of the overall game and prime snacking time. Avoid foods that are starchy and that are high in sugar. Consuming those foods will spike your blood sugar and leave you feeling drowsy hours later. Resist eating the familiar comfort foods at the course and opt for the options that will provide you with sustained energy.

Top Five Healthy and Nutrient Friendly Snacks:

1. Nuts: A mixture of walnuts and almonds will help elevate energy and reduce any inflammation on the course. Almonds are also rich with vitamin E, which studies have shown to help prevent soreness.

2. Bananas: Bananas are the perfect snack for any sport at any time of the day, and perfect for women (as they help the body absorb calcium)! Bananas provide immediate energy without burning out later on, therefore, one banana can last you the entire 18 holes.

3. Carrots/Celery

4. Cheese: string or cubed cheese is the perfect stabilizer; it gives you the sustenance you need to help level out your blood sugar.

5. Power bars: Lara Bar, mini Cliff Bar, Luna bar or trial mix.

  • We Recommend: Bear Naked Tral Mix (it comes in a variety of flavors and isn’t flavored with any artificial sweetner, yet it is still delicious!)
  • Clif Crunch Peanut Butter Bar (190 Calories, 9g fat per 2 bars and has an addicting sweetness!)
  • Fig and Walnut Energy Bars (recipe below)

What to eat after you play:
The post-round meal is just as important as the pre-round meal, as you have to replace all the carbs and proteins that you lost during the round. Eat foods that are rich in protein and carbs. Foods that are high in carbs are more likely to replenish the muscles that were used during the round. Post-meals would include any lean protein such as chicken, fish or turkey and any rich carbohydrate such as wheat bread, rice or another healthy grain.

Foods to avoid before, during and after: soda, candy bars (snickers are yummy but won’t give you the long lasting energy you will need), potato items, hot dogs. Following this regime is sure to provide you with the endurance necessary to enhance your performance.

Recipe for Spaghetti Dinner:
Recipe Courtesy: Livestrong.com

Ingredients:

  • 1 sweet onion
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 6 cups Kitchen Ready Ground Peeled Tomatoes
  • 8 Tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 box of whole-wheat spaghetti noodles (you can use regular spaghetti noodles if you do not like the wheat taste)
  • 4 oz of ground beef (other options include: ground turkey, turkey sausage or chicken sausage)
  • 1 loaf of french or garlic bread

Directions:

Spaghetti Sauce:
  • Sautee Onions and Garlic Together till translucent.Add 2 Cans Kitchen Ready Peeled Tomatoes
  • 2 Cans of Tomato Paste
  • Season with 2 tablespoons of Oregano and Basil.

Add a pinch of salt and pepper. After all the spices are mixed, add red wine and a touch of cayenne pepper and allow the mixture to come to a slow boil. If the sauce becomes too thick add a small amount of water to the mix. You can also add meatballs or sausage (turkey and chicken sausage is available at your local store)
Boil the noodles, till soft. Brown meats in a separate frying pan, and drain oil from noodles add spaghetti sauce to the meat until warm. Drain the noodles. Put bread in on 350 for 15 minutes. Then plate, serve and enjoy!
Amount per serving: 303 calories, 113 calories from fat, 12 g of fat, 14 % protein, and 46% carbs.

Fig and Walnut Energy Bars:
Recipe Courtesy: Ellie Krieger for Food Network Magazine

Photo courtesy: Food Network Kitchen

Ingredients:

• Cooking spray

• 1 cup quick-cooking oats

• 1 cup bran cereal

• 1/4 cup whole-wheat flour

• 1 cup walnut pieces

• 1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped stemmed dried figs

• 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk

• 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

• 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

• 1/4 cup honey

• 2 large eggs

Directions:

• Preheat the oven to 350. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

• Place the oats, cereal, flour, walnuts, figs, dry milk, cinnamon and ginger in a food processor; coarsely chop.

• Add the honey and eggs; pulse until well combined.

• Transfer the mixture to the pan; spread evenly with your fingers. Bake until lightly browned around the edges, about 20 minutes. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then cut into 16 bars. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or wrap individually and freeze for up to 3 months.

Per bar: Calories 149; Fat 6 g (Saturated 1 g); Cholesterol 27 mg; Sodium 31 mg; Carbohydrate 22 g; Fiber 4 g; Protein 5 g

Eating healthy does not have to be difficult. It is all about picking smart choices and looking at the bigger picture. Athletic performance hinges on proper dieting. Nutritionist Amanda Carlson-Phillips stated to Gottagogolf magazine, “When preparing for anything important, eating clean and balanced is the way to go.” Carlson-Phillips also works at an Athletes’ Performance training center in Phoenix, making her well versed when it comes to proper nutrition and athletic performance.

Want more recipes? Go to www.livestrong.com/recipes. or www.foodnetwork.com/healthy_eating. to find a variety of healthy recipe options, along with nutritional facts.

By: Cassandra Gonzales
USGA-WSCGA Intern

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