Nutrition Tips to Boost Athletic Performance

January 14, 2023

Happy 2023!  The New Year often inspires us tackle a new goal or athletic endeavor.  Often, we jump in headfirst and start working toward our goals without considering all the variables.

If you want to train hard and perform your best, focusing on nutrition, hydration and recovery must be top priority, regardless of the season, your age, or fitness level!

Fueled workouts + optimal recovery = fitness gains!!

I often hear people say they’ve hit a plateau with their fitness or physique goals. Many times, a few small changes in nutrition can drastically improve performance and enhance recovery.


Nutrition Tips to Boost Athletic Performance and Recovery

1. Balanced Macronutrients throughout the day.  

Athletes need a balanced supply of nutrients coming in throughout the day to fuel the body, regulate energy levels, prepare for training sessions, and help aid in recovery.  

Recommendation: Consume 3 meals per day with each meal containing all macronutrients - protein, carbohydrates, and fats. In addition, eat 1 to 2 snacks depending on length and intensity of training that day.


  • Pre-workout Snack (see ideas below)
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner 
  • Fill half of the plate with colorful fruits and veggies, add lean protein (approximately 1 palm size for women and 2 for men), and healthy fat (approximately 1 thumb for women and 2 for men).

2. Pre-Workout Fuel.

Athletes must fuel workouts to have energy to sustain muscular strength and endurance.  Remember, your car can’t run very long without gas in the tank just like your body can’t perform at optimal levels without energy (calories)!

The purpose of a pre-workout meal or snack is to fuel your workout and give your body energy to perform at its peak.

Recommendation:  Your body needs carbohydrates for energy and protein to supply muscles with amino acids.  Eat something easily digestible 30 mins - 3 hours before exercise depending on length of training session and how quickly your digestive system works.

Example: A few of my favorite pre-workout snacks /meals:

  • No Bake Energy Bites
  • Overnight oats
  • Whole grain toast or frozen banana with nut butter
  • Greek yogurt with berries

3. Post Workout Fuel:  After exercise, our bodies are starving for replenishment so they can rebuild and repair. It’s CRITICAL to refuel your body within 30-45 minutes post workout when our bodies are most receptive to replenishing glycogen stores and repairing muscles.

Recommendation:  Focus on a mix of carbohydrates and protein along with fluids within 30-45 minutes to help you refuel, repair and be ready to do it all over again.

Example:  Many times, we don’t have much of an appetite after a hard workout. Start with a small snack or smoothie with a mix of protein + carbs within 30-45 minutes of your training session. Then, follow with a macronutrient balanced meal within the next 1-2 hours.

4. Hydration:  As an athlete, staying on top of hydration is the most important thing you can do to set yourself up for peak performance.

Recommendation:  A great starting point is to aim to drink at least ½ of your body weight in ounces of water daily to help avoid the symptoms of dehydration such as fatigue, dizziness, brain fog, and muscle cramping.  Increase water intake if you’re super active, sweat a lot of live in a dry climate like Colorado!

Example:  For training sessions longer than 45minutes to 1 hour, hydrate every 15 - 20 minutes with an electrolyte drink (avoid sugary sports drinks with artificial sweeteners and food dyes) or water with fresh lemon and a dash of sea salt.