Your pre-match fuel ensures your body is ready to optimally perform at the start of the match and the high quality foods will maximize your glucose stores for energy.
Your post-match fuel is designed to fully replenish your body fuel and hydration stores. The faster you can replenish your body the quicker you recover and are ready for the next match. Your post-match meal recommendations will be similar foods to your pre-match meal recommendations.
One important note is that depending on your intensity level, you may have an increased appetite for the rest of the day due to the amount of energy your body expended.
All you need to do is continue eating PFC Every 3 balanced meals when you’re hungry (even if it’s before 3 hours), as this will ensure optimal recovery.
Here are your three post-match eating guidelines:
Eat a high or medium quality meal within 30 minutes after your match so you can start replenishing your fuel. Since this is post-match and you may be celebrating with your tennis team or hanging out at the tennis club, it’s all right to eat medium quality foods for this particular occasion, but definitely avoid them pre-match.
Make sure to drink at least 2-4 cups (8 oz. per cup) of water within 60 minutes after your competition to ensure you’re rehydrated
Choose from this list of high or medium quality proteins, carbs and fats to ensure that your body digests them well and provides a feeling of replenishment.
Your pre-match meal is all about feeling light and fast, your post-match meal is designed to leave you feeling replenished. If you expended a lot of energy, your appetite may be stronger than normal; if you’re still hungry after you eat, increase your portion sizes for that meal.
Important Note: You can have a protein shake, bar or meal replacement if whole food isn’t available immediately after your match. But primarily focus on eating whole food pre and post-match and using shakes and bars for during match fuel.
We all love a great post-match dinner, especially if the match went well. Simply apply these same eating concepts when eating in a restaurant.
Here are four examples of what a great post-match meal looks like:
- steak (protein & fat), asparagus (carb) and rice (carb)
- turkey meatballs (protein & fat) & pasta (carb)
- barbecue chicken pizza (protein, fat & carb)
- Lettuce-wrapped turkey burger on sweet potato bun (protein, fat & carb)
Mark Macdonald is a world renowned nutrition and fitness expert, best-selling author, television personality, international teacher and speaker, and entrepreneur who has coached everyone from celebrities to athletes to business executives to busy moms.
He is the founder of Venice Nutrition and the IBNFC: International Board of Nutrition and Fitness Coaching, author of the New York Times Bestselling books Body Confidence and Why Kids Make You Fat...and How to Get Your Body Back, as well as a featured health expert for many national media outlets.