5 RANGE NUTRITION
01 Meal/diet Selection
Your food intake dictates your sports performance (even professionals would agree) and that includes the shooting sports. Whether you’re a professional, semi-pro, novice or recreational competitive shooter, proper food intake will help you fuel your body and endure a full day (or sometimes more) of shooting. Bring enough food that will last you the whole event. Consult with a nutritionist whenever you decide to go on a diet plan.
02 Do’s and Don’ts
I bring my own food and drink. I don’t change the usual food I eat on the eve or day of the event, and I don’t eat the food provided by the event. Here’s why. While participating at an event, I decided not to eat the BBQ they provided because it just didn’t look appetizing to me. Well, the rest of the shooters who consumed the food ended up sprinting toward the porta-potties about an hour after their meal and could not continue the event. Finally, I don’t pack food that spoils easily (usually anything with mayo).
03 Meal Frequency
I generally eat a healthy meal. Instead of eating three full meals a day, however, I portion about four to six meals a day. This works for me, but each person is different.
My meals consist of a balanced portion of carbs, protein and fat. And these portions are about the size of my fist. Do I get hungry fast? Yes. I snack in between my meals. I snack on trail mixes, beef jerkies (low sodium) and dried fruit snacks.
04 Drinks/hydration Selection
Water … and it’s cheap! You have got to keep your body hydrated. I stay away from carbonated and/or caffeine drinks. Carbonated drinks make my blood sugar jump and drop. I drink black coffee only in the morning, but will only take small sips just to keep me up but not jittery.
I take sports drinks like Gatorade or Powerade once in a while if I am sweating profusely, but I will dilute them with water. But, the best for me is Pedialyte. It’s way better than these sports drinks. It provides more electrolytes and sodium, which are great for rehydration. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink; that’s too late!
My rule of thumb is to drink half a bottle of water every hour. This keeps me hydrated and does not fill my bladder right away. I also prefer to drink cold water.
Food storage is very important. Improper food storage could lead to bacteria on your food or fast spoilage. I invested in a quality cooler for food and drink storage. I bring a cooler to every event I go to. A good quality cooler can keep your food and drinks cool throughout the day. I pack Blue Ice Blocks (instead of ice) on the bottom and on top of my food and drinks. Food temperature is key to keep it fresh and avoid bacteria building, which could get you sick during and/or after the event.