In honor of March Madness, I’d like to dedicate this week’s blog to the athletes in my GangstaLean audience, or anyone looking to improve diet while balancing a better fitness routine. You don’t have to be a pro athlete to eat like one, it just takes a little time to commit to the basics of nutritional fueling. Your energy levels can match the happiness of your belly after devouring a Gangsta Goodies Kitchen dish.
There’s a special kind of energy flowing through an athlete after a gym or practice session. The goodness of endorphins flowing through the bloodstream as the sweaty shoulders heave reminds them that the hustle was worth it. It’s important to remember though, that this aura of amazingness comes from a source of good nutrition, which is a hustle in and of itself these days as we’re inundated with unhealthy temptations, daily time crunches and for some of us, lack of nutritional knowledge.
Lean Protiens and Complex Carbs
If you’re looking to maximize your performance, take it from this Olympic dietician, who recommends preparing your body with foods like whole grain bread, oatmeal, fresh fruit and eggs. It’s also important to eat these nutrients in small but frequent spurts with plenty of water gulps to keep the body continuously hydrated while it recovers. You can prepare a few days worth of my Kale and Spinach salad to get you through the week as a side to your main meals – or, throw in some extra protein like salmon or grilled chicken for a full meal. I promise, your body will not tire of the flavors coming out of this recipe! As you prepare for the workout, try to avoid too much protein though, due to it’s slow digestion process. You want to make sure that all the oxygen and blood in your body is delivering energy to your muscles and not working on breaking down food in your gut!
Post Workout Refuel
All that sweat, deep heaving and feel good hormones take up a lot of energy ya’ll, and it’s so critical to always have a proper refuel plan ready to go. Aside from the jugs of water you should be drinking, throwing in a blend of real fruit juice can go a long way to replenish some of the nutrients you’re sweating out. But complex carbs and good protein will always be in demand and it’s at this point that you can let loose on the muscle-building protein buffet. Plus, you’ll also need a refill on those complex carbs you just used up for energy during your workout. Now, I have a recipe that’s not only going to deliver on your carbs and protein, but your tastebuds will definitely go mad over the flavors that you might even question ‘how is something healthy tasting so good?!.’ My ‘Not Your Mommas Collard Greens’ recipe delivers on your body’s call to refuel and soothes the hungry athlete’s appetite for good food. In fact, this dish is so creatively flavorful, Spice Lab Inc. thought it was worthy of competing in the World Food Championships and FOX4KC featured it on their morning cooking show!
Committing to the GangstaLean
You can never go wrong with snacking on fresh fruits, veggies and even nuts and breads in moderation, which is definitely a habit to maintain as you keep your energy levels on even keel. But my goal is to make it easy to commit to a GangstaLean routine by providing recipes, flavors and ideas that ensure your meals will never be bland. You’ll find a variety of recipes that are easy to make and meal prep while still making your mouth water. Be it a veggie burger, baked crab legs, chicken ceasar salad with a twist, my Instagram, Facebook, Youtube and Gangsta Lean website section is a go-to for the athletes looking for that extra pep in their cooking step.