Top 5 Ways a Hockey Player can Keep Energy High During Busy Times

August 30, 2016 , ,

Back-to-school means back to the busy season. Eating right and making good food choices can help keep your and your hockey players energised through the most hectic schedules. Here are 5 great ways to keep you energy up even during the busiest time.

1. Portable Meals


Make the first meal of the day portable. Goodness knows it might be eaten well into the morning! Smoothies, Sandwiches, or even traditional breakfasts can be great options if you find the right container to keep them crunchy and safe to eat (think cereals and yogurt parfaits).

2. Nutrient Rich Snacks

If your child’s school is nut friendly take advantage of the wonderful nutrient combination that comes in each nut and pack an assortment of nuts for snacks. Opt for nuts that are unseasoned or dry roasted to avoid eating refined oils or a lot of salt. If you need a nut snack alternative, try a healthy muffin made with whole grains, fresh fruit, and seeds like pumpkin seeds or chia seeds.

3. Pack Water Bottles

Caption 3: Hydration with water starts first thing in the morning and should be an hourly occurrence not a once a day event. By packing a water bottle for the day (and refilling it once or twice) you make hydrating easy and measurable. You can see how much you drink and how your energy levels are affected by something as simple as water!

4. Avoid Too Much Refined Sugar

One of the biggest mistakes we make when packing healthy food for on-the-go busy hockey players is overdoing the refined fruit options (juice, purées, date bars, etc.). One item a day eaten at the right time (e.g. close to or during hockey) can help give a youngster an energy boost BUT rapid energy boosts are not needed during a sedentary part of the day. Refined fruit products are not very different than refined sugar and should only be a small part of your busy times food plan.

5. Pack a Hockey Bag Snack Kit

Conserved foods can be a performance enhancer in a pinch. I strongly recommend you have a full kit of food options that can easily be a meal, a quick energy snack, or a recovery snack. Here is one kit from my book: Cereal such as a low sugar whole grain flake cereal + a bag of milk powder pre-portioned to be able to quickly make 1 cup of milk + Power Cookies.

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Pearle Nerenberg
Pearle Nerenberg, MSc., R.D. is Canada's leading expert on hockey nutrition, and author of the book The Nutrition Edge for Hockey Performance. She co-founded and chairs the Hockey Nutrition Network, an international non-profit organization dedicated to linking hockey players with top sports dietitians who have an expertise in hockey nutrition.

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