Snack & Nutrition Suggestions from Coach Arlen

Hi Team,

Nutrition is an essential part of your performance in sports. “Eat to Win” is not just a cute phrase, it’s reality. You can adapt these suggestions for your weekly meal planning, however, before and during tournaments, I want to request that you do your best to follow these suggestions.

 The Night Before a Tournament

– Tournaments last around 6 hours as such the girls will burn a lot of calories and need energy in the form of food. This starts the night before tournaments (and all meals leading up to the tournaments).

– Suggested foods: Whole Wheat Pasta and Pizzas, Grilled Chicken, Vegetables, Healthy Sub Sandwiches, etc. Basically eat a healthy meal and carboload good carbohydrates like whole wheat breads and pastas.

– Foods to Avoid: Excessively oily, fried foods, salty foods. (No Saimin, Fried Chicken, etc.)

 Breakfast foods:

– Oatmeal, Eggs and Rice, turkey bacon, English muffins, etc.

– Avoid: Oily foods, SPAM, bacon, link sausage, etc.

During Tournament Snacks:

Some snacks are great for during the tournaments, other snacks are good for AFTER the tournament. The key is to know which foods, when.

– Please prepare snacks in individual servings so that they can be distributed quickly. We have minutes between matches and in that time we need to be able to run, grab snacks, throw a few things in our mouths, and run back onto the court.

– Suggested Snacks- Granola bars, power/protein bars, Edamame (Soy beans), Fruit salad (grapes, apples, pears, melons, NO ORANGES, NO LI HING POWDER), Trail Mix, Nuts, etc. Sandwiches (PB light Jelly is great, cold cuts no mayo, etc) Again, think healthy, but there are guidelines which you may not think about.

– Avoid Citrus fruits like Oranges because of the citric acid. No Crack Seed or shave ice. We are avoiding excessively salty or sugary foods.

– I recommend 1-2 bottles of sports drink per tournament for the girls. These drinks replace electrolytes lost during sweating. It has been shown that a 5% drop in hydration yields a 20% drop in performance. And “Once you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated.”

 After tournaments:

These should NOT be consumed during tournaments, but saved for after.

– Protein Shakes, Chocolate Milk, Bananas, etc.

– Food restrictions are off after the tournaments and the girls can eat what they please. Favorites are bentos, pizza, etc.

More info:

Read some of the nutrition articles you might find online, especially sports and volleyball nutrition. Protein and carbs should be consumed within a couple of hours after practices and tournaments to ensure muscle rebuilding after an intense workout.

Here’s a good website to start with:

Thanks for bearing with my ranting about nutrition.
Coach Arlen

PS- I also take vitamin supplements and suggest everyone do so. My personal favorite is Amway/Nutrilite organic vitamins, but you can find your favorite brands.