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Building muscle mass

Novice or recreational soccer players are unlikely to exhaust themselves during hour-long workouts, or deplete their muscles of glycogen, or become dehydrated.

They need not worry about rapidly refueling their bodies and building muscle mass. Although they do need to develop good eating habits for future more serious play, and so benefit by understanding this aspect of sports nutrition. Serious soccer players, in comparison, can end up depleted, exhausted and dehydrated during intense exercise that lasts longer than an hour. They need to carefully plan their recovery foods and fluids—particularly if they are doing double sessions and/or competing in tournament situations.

When soccer is intense, be sure to plan your recovery diet, just as you plan your pre-game meal. You need carbs and water to rapidly refuel your muscles and rehydrate your on building muscle mass Ideally, you should also consume a little protein, to reduce muscle soreness and help repair damaged muscles. If your next game is two hours away, you should immediately consume some chocolate milk, instant breakfast, yogurt, juice, sports drink, or even a soft drink if all else fails.

Your muscles are 60% more efficient in rebuilding their glycogen stores if you can refuel 30 to 60 minutes after activity. However, many players are stuck without any refreshments conveniently nearby. Plan ahead to have your post- game recovery food handy.

All too often, exhausted soccer players say they are “too tired to eat.” Or, they have traveled to a game and are eager to get home. Perhaps they have no food in the car and don’t want to stop to eat.building muscle mass diet Or, they might be weight-conscious and hesitant to refuel. After a hard workout that “kills” their appetite, they may have little desire to eat, so they ignore all advice to rapidly refuel. Unfortunately, they miss the opportunity to speed muscle recovery and many of them end up devouring cookies or other junk food in a few hours when hunger strikes.


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Recovery Options

What should you eat to optimize recovery after an intense session? Any fuel is better than no fuel, but the best post-exercise snacks include a foundation of carbs to replace the depleted glycogen stores, and a small amount protein to repair the muscle damage.

A 125-pound (57 kg) exhausted player should graze on about 250 to 350 calories of carbs within the first half hour and then again every two hours for the next four to six hours.building leg muscle mass More precisely, the target is ~0.5 to 0.7 grams of carbohydrate per pound of body weight (~1.0 to 1.5 g carb/kg) or ~750 to 1,400 calories (~200 to 350 g) of recovery carbs. That may seem like a lot of bagels; pretzels, bananas and juice, but your appetite will guide the way.

Assuming you are not “dieting” nor are “too busy” to eat, you’ll tend to naturally  follow  a  pattern  with  repeated  doses  of  simple  snacks. Some popular carb + protein recovery choices include:

Fruit yogurt + Grape-Nuts

Chocolate milk Cereal with milk Turkey on a bulky roll Pita and hummus

Toasted (low-fat) cheese and tomato sandwich Chicken dinner with rice and vegetables Spaghetti with meatballs

Bean burritos

If you are refueling after an away-game or during a tournament, carry with you such foods as:

Trail mix (nuts and raisins)

Bagel with peanut butter and jelly

Go-gurt (liquid yogurt) Apple and cheese sticks

Energy bar with 3 to 4 times as many carbs as protein

If the weather is cold, pack a thermos filled with warm minestrone or chicken noodle way to gain muscle mass In hot weather, think cold beverages and chilled fruit with cottage cheese and crackers.

Here’s what Boston Breakers player Kristine Lilly commonly uses to refuel after a hard game. She tosses the food into her soccer bag, so it is ready and waiting to be devoured!

Chocolate Gatorade Shake Chocolate Chip Fiber-One Bar Water

Sandwich of some sort (like her favorite PB&J, made with soft bread, raspberry jelly and

Peanut butter)

Some soccer players like commercial recovery drinks, like Accelerate or Endure. Just remember: these engineered foods lack all the health-protective nutrients that you get in “real food, “so be sure to balance them into an overall healthful diet. Or, choose meal replacers like Carnation Instant Breakfast, Boost, Slim Fast or Ensure, because they offer more nutritional value.

If you have over-extended yourself and feel nauseous after a tough game, try to take in some chicken soup, or drink a little ginger ale while nibbling on a few saltines or pretzels.exercises to gain muscle mass The sooner you can get fluids, carbs and sodium into your system, the better you will start to feel.

How much should you drink?  If you are a recreational player and have consumed adequate pre-event liquids, you will unlikely be exercising to the extent you become to build mass But if you play intensely in the heat, you should replace fluid losses as soon as possible to help your body restore normal water balance.

As to what to drink after a workout:

• Water generally does the job of replacing sweat losses for both youth and competitive players; the accompanying recovery snacks can offer the needed carbs, protein and sodium.

• Sports drinks, while popular after exercise, are actually designed to be consumed during exercise that lasts for longer than 60 to 90 to gain muscular mass Sports drinks can be enjoyed post-exercise, but real foods tend to offer more nutritional value and electrolytes (sodium, potassium).

• Chocolate milk, fruit smoothies (made with slenderized fruit + yogurt),building muscle mass and Instant Breakfast drinks are excellent for exhausted players who need to rapidly refuel with a carb-protein combination.


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