Carbohydrate Tips for Youth Soccer Players
Soccer players should aim to make 60-65% of their diet carbohydrates. Focus on fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains such as brown rice and pasta, whole grain breads, potatoes and higher fiber cereals. This is the most important type of fuel for a soccer player. Carbohydrates are the vital energy-providing nutrient for days leading up to and the day of the game.
During short, intense bouts of exercise (think sprinting and the quick cutting motion), carbohydrates are the only fuel capable of supplying the body with the energy it needs quickly. The body relies on carbs throughout the entire game. They are crucial in the first few minutes to get your muscles moving, and your body relies on them at the end of the game when needing to repeat those last few sprints.
Our brains like to use glucose (sugar that come from breaking down carbs in the body) as its preferred fuel – having enough quality carbohydrates in your diet can keep your body moving and mind sharp!