The Best Diet Plan for Weight Loss

BREAKFAST

‘I’m starving when I wake up, so, unless I’m doing a big cardio session first thing, I get the food in quickly! I get eggs on the go, a bit of avocado and maybe some smoked salmon. We train pretty hard and it’s important to fuel your body right so you recover well. We’re often travelling so you have to avoid the waffles and bacon at the breakfast buffet! I usually have a cup of tea first thing too.’ TREATS ‘Coffee; we go to countries where the coffee is really good. And sticky toffee pudding with ice cream is an occasional treat.’

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LUNCH

‘I’m into bagels, so it might be a chicken bagel, chicken salad or a superfood salad with roasted pumpkin, spinach and a few walnuts. I love a coffee too; I try to limit myself to one a day but it’s usually two. We have a team nutritionist for guidance but, generally, I just try to make sure I get a variety of foods and vegetables. I love veg. Protein is key but, if you’ve had a long day on the field, it’s important to get your glycogen stores back and eat lots of carbs. Our training is quite varied, so we adjust our intake accordingly.’

DINNER

‘One of the best parts of the job is trying different restaurants and cuisines when we’re travelling, but it can be hard to make sure you choose the right options. I love Japanese food and sushi. I always keep healthier options in mind, but it’s always okay to have the occasional treat.’ SNACKS ‘I get hungry every three hours, so I might have a protein bar, such as Grenade (grenade.com) and at least one smoothie a day; I love spinach, banana, almond milk, and peanut butter. I like yoghurt with berries and nuts too.’

SUPPLEMENTS

‘If we’re training all day in a hot climate, we lose a lot of sweat, so we drink as much water as we can and take electrotabs to stay hydrated; we probably get through seven or eight electrotabs during the course of a game. We also take creatine; it might go in a shake after a gym session for recovery. I also sometimes add protein powder, or mix protein into Greek yoghurt — definitely chocolate flavour. We use cherry pills too, half an hour before bed. They help you recover and I sleep much better when I take them.’

NUTRITIONIST’S VERDICT

Getting the right balance of macronutrients after training is important, but timing is also key. The window of 20–60 minutes after exercise is crucial for repairing, rebuilding and refuelling muscles. Heather is lucky she has access to a nutritionist to guide her, because when you are away from home it’s harder to control what you eat. There’s no reason Heather should feel guilty about coffee or limit herself to just one — studies show a coffee just before exercise can help you train harder. However, if she has problems sleeping, she should avoid caffeine for six hours before bedtime.’

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