If you want to increase energy and gain the edge over your competition, then you must have a variety of healthy snacks available before, during, and after practice and competition.
Nutrient timing is critical to peak performance, so plan ahead! Eating every three hours or so will keep your energy level high and optimize muscle mass and recovery.
Remember, healthy carbohydrates (grains, fruits, veggies, energy bars higher in carbs and lower in protein) provide energy to your muscles. Protein is for muscle repair and building lean muscle mass.
Protein does help curb your appetite and make your fuel last, but that doesn’t mean eat a 20 gram protein bar 30 minutes before practice or competition. It means include some protein in your meal 3-4 hours before activity.
The closer you get to practice or competition, shift your focus to healthy carbs to top off your fuel. Then use quick digesting carbs (see “Quick Energy” below) to refuel during activity. After activity, shift back to a combination of protein and carbs.
Avoid “taste fatigue” and get vital micronutrients by varying your snack choices.
SCROLL DOWN and fill your cart with any of these energy and recovery boosting snacks that will help you fuel up for peak performance and jump start recovery after practice or competition.
- Wheat Thins
- Ak Mak or Wasa Crackers
- Tortillas (corn or wheat)
- Pitas or Pita Chips
- Graham crackers or animal crackers
- Oatmeal raisin cookies
- Chex Mix or Trail Mix
- Oyster crackers
- Dry cereals (whole grain, not sweet children’s cereal)
- Oatmeal packets
Check out our Energy Bar FAQ to make sure you choose the right bar for before and after practice or competition. Below are some of the more popular types of bars, but also check your local natural foods store for healthy options.
- Honey Stinger Bars
- Nut bars
- Trail mix bars
- NutriGrain Bar
- Fig newton bars
- Kashi bars
- Granola bars
- Special K bars
- Clif Bar
These are fast digesting carbs to top of your energy levels right before practice or competition or to replenish energy levels during activity.
- Fresh fruit
- Dried fruit
- Frozen fruit
- Fruit cups (in juice, not syrup)
- Applesauce or mixed applesauce
All vegetables are fantastic but here are some that are easy to pack.
- Snap Peas
- Snow Peas
- Bell Peppers
- Boiled eggs or eggs of any kind
- Yogurt shakes
- Yogurt or Greek yogurt
- Cheese any form, try for lower fat (not fat free)
- Cottage cheese
- Beef or turkey jerky
- Sunflower seeds
- Trail mix
- Peanut butter or other nut butters
- Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
- Black bean dips
- Meat or fish
- Lean meat sandwiches (avoid prepackaged, make from non-processed deli meat)
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