New exercise regimens are only a small part of trying to live a new and improved healthy lifestyle. The old adage of “you can’t out-train a bad diet” rings as true as it ever has. Pro athletes know this all too well, especially as they get a little older and their metabolisms begin to slow down.
Here we take a look at just some of the diet plans that pro athletes from a multitude of sports use to maintain both their physiques and performance.
NBA Players Ditch Sugar and Junk for Vegan Lifestyle
American sports have always led the way when it comes to professionalism, but that has not always translated into athletes from competitions like the NBA taking their diets as seriously as they should.
A good case in point are players like Dwight Howard, who spent the peak years of his career consuming everything from packets of candy to bags of McDonalds. Luckily for Howard, and the franchises he represented on the NBA money lines, his talent and genetic prowess meant he was still able to offset the negative impacts his diet was having.
However, now in the twilight years of his career, and seeing his younger teammates adopt better diets, Howard and many other NBA players have changed their ways, much to the delight of NBA betting punters.
Among the players who have been extolling the virtues of veggie and vegan diets are DeAndre Jordan of the resurgent Brooklyn Nets, Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers, and Jahlil Okafor of the Detroit Pistons. All of these are teams that are riding high in the NBA Championship winner betting odds, and their diets no doubt have something to do with that.
NFL Players Clean Up Their Act
While NBA players used to be some of the worst offenders when it came to having poor diets, NFL stars were not too far behind in the fat and sugar stakes.
The diet that an NFL player adopts usually depends on the sort of position they play out on the field, with many players needing to ensure they keep their weight up as well as maintaining their agility. A running back like Arian Foster will regularly chow down on foodstuffs that deliver plenty of healthy carbs, such as quinoa.
Similarly, an agile quarterback like Tom Brady ensures he gets a good mix of lean carbohydrates, alongside protein-rich foods such as egg whites, kale and sweet potato.
Heavier players whose duties are of a more defensive nature will follow similar diet patterns, but will add in carb-rich foods that ensure their weight does not dip below an optimal level. After all, they do not want to be bullied by heavier and stronger opponents when it comes to game day.
MMA Fighters Ahead of the Diet Curve
MMA franchises like the UFC have been well ahead of the curve when it comes to building an online brand and taking advantage of new age media, so it comes as no surprise that many of their athletes have also been blazing a trail when it comes to their food and drink intake.
One activity that they need to be particularly well-fueled for is a hard day’s sparring, which is the closest thing a fighter can get to a real pro scrap. On days such as these, fighters will typically start out with a slow-burning carb-loaded breakfast of porridge flavored with fruit. This will also be accompanied by a side of three or four hard-boiled eggs.
Meals should also be eaten long before the sparring begins, just to ensure that the food does not make a reappearance in the octagon after a cheeky kick to the gut. Smoothies round out this pre-fight meal, as they have the sort of nitrates that can naturally boost an athlete’s performance.