How to Boost and Maintain Energy | STACK
X

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

How to Boost and Maintain Energy

October 1, 2011 | Featured in the Fall, 2011 Issue

Must See Nutrition Videos

You might have noticed that LeBron James performed better in the first quarter last season than he did in fourth quarter. The reason might actually have to do with his arteries.

That’s right, not his muscles, his brain or his heart (spirit), but his heart function— how well his heart supplies energy to his muscles through his arteries. LBJ’s muscles perform well in the first quarter, but to function well down the stretch, they need extra energy. And eating well before the game can provide just that.

As you use your muscles, your arteries refill their energy supply with oxygen and nutrients by pumping more blood into them, forcing the removal of performance-sabotaging waste products like lactic acid. So a key to your peak performance is to ensure your arteries are performing at their peak on game day.

Think of your vascular system as a train network. Your heart is the main station, the hub through which all trains must travel. Your arteries and veins are the tracks and tunnels that flow through your body, dropping passengers (blood) off at various sub-stations (joints, muscles).

If there’s an obstruction in the tracks, the passengers get irate. In your body, a station getting less blood than it needs will not perform at peak level. Your arteries normally dilate when demand from your muscles increases—unless you have inhibited them.

Avoid Artery Inhibitors Before Games
Saturated fats, processed meats, milk chocolate, coconut oils and caffeine

Consume These Artery Expanders Instead
Foods containing citrulline and arginine: watermelon, walnuts or almonds

Mehmet Oz and Mike Roizen, authors of four New York Times #1 bestsellers on health, and Kristin Kirkpatrick, a Cleveland Clinic nutritionist and regular guest on the Dr. Oz Show, are the YOU Docs, STACK’s experts on health and sports performance. 

Topics: YOU DOCS
Must See
Dwyane Wade Leads by Example
Views: 2,991,729
Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night
Views: 3,506,049
Margus Hunt Benches 385 Pounds for Five Reps
Views: 18,559,202

Featured Videos

Quest for the Ring: University of Kentucky Views: 297,020
Add Core Power for Basketball With Damian Lillard's Med Ball Throws Views: 4,255,927
Path to the Pros 2015: The Journey Begins Views: 28,363
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

More Cool Stuff You'll Like

Eat Like a Champion, Part 2: How to Lose Fat Safely

Welcome to the STACK Eat Like a Champion article series, where we'll talk to nutrition experts about how to eat to beat the competition. You'll learn...

Pre-Game Nutrition: What to Eat Before You Compete

The Food Rules for Building Muscle

What You Need to Know about Fats

Avoid Pigging Out: How to Conquer Food Cravings

Post-Holiday Chocolate Health Benefits

Study Ranks Paleo As Second-Worst Diet

Why Chicken Soup Strengthens Your Immune System

8 Recovery Foods Recommended by Sport Dietitians

Big Breakfast, Small Breakfast, No Breakfast: Which Is Best?

Is It Okay to Eat the Same Thing Every Day?

Are 'Healthy Chips' Really Healthy? 5 Popular Options Examined

Low Workout Stamina? Your Diet May Be the Culprit

Bone Broth Breakdown: Should You Eat This 'Super' Soup'?

Simple Nutrition Tips for Faster Workout Gains

Why Every Athlete Should Drink Tea

The 5 Foods That Will Rule 2015

Performance-Boosting Snacks with a Satisfying Crunch

What You Need to Know About Protein

Types of Yogurt: What's New and What's Best for Athletes

3 Tips to Eat Healthy on a Budget

Macronutrients, Part I: Carbohydrates

How to Turn Nutrition Goals Into Actions

Do You Need Protein Immediately After Your Workout?

A Healthier Milk, Brought to You By Coca-Cola. Wait, What?

5 Changes Fast-Food Restaurants Are Making to Become Healthier

The Nutrition That Powers Joe Thomas's Iron-Man Streak

Halftime Snacks for Quick Refueling

Coconut Sugar: What Is It, and Is It Good for You?

Game-Day Nutrition for Soccer Players

How to Build a Meal Plan to Suit Your Body Type

Is All Sugar Bad for You?

How and Why to Eat Mindfully

Eat Like a Champion, Part 3: Post-Workout Nutrition

Eat Like a Champion, Part 1: How to Build Muscle in the Kitchen

Cheerios With Quinoa: Coming Soon to a Grocery Store Near You

12 Grab-and-Go High Protein Snacks

Russell Wilson Wants You to 'Eat the Ball'

4 Common Nutrition Questions Answered