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Losing Weight for Athletes: Eating to fuel, not to gain weight

Content by: Nancy Clark MS RD CSSD

Many athletes struggle to maintain a desired weight, while having enough energy to train. Read these helpful tips, if you are trying to lose weight!

Losing Weight for Athletes: Eating to fuel, not to gain weight


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Tips for losing weight and having energy to exercise well.
• Rather than going “on a diet,” eat smaller portions of the foods you currently enjoy.

• Chip away at fat loss by subtracting 10- to 20-percent from what you normally eat.

• Be sure to eat enough during the day, so you will have plenty of energy to exercise at your best. Surround your workouts with food.

• Eat less at night, so you lose fat while you are sleeping. Your goal is to fuel by day, lose weight (diet) by night and wake up hungry for a good breakfast.

• Eat slowly! Your brain needs about 20 minutes to receive the signal that you have eaten your fill.

• Keep food out of sight, so you can more easily keep it out of your mouth.

• If you eat because you are bored, stressed, tired or lonely, make a list of ten things you can do instead of eating: read emails, surf the Internet, go to bed early, etc.

• Learn how to handle stress and anxiety without over-eating. No amount of food will satisfy stress-induced hunger. Process problems by writing in a journal for 5-10 minutes.

• Every morning before you get out of bed, visualize yourself eating appropriately and achieving your weight goals.

• Once a week, plan a maintenance day. Eat normally, but don’t over-do it!

• If you weigh yourself, do so once a week first thing in the morning, after you have gone to the bathroom and before you have eaten. Don't weigh yourself after exercise or at night, as it gives a false weight!

• Be proud of your new healthy eating patterns! They should be sustainable for the rest of your life.

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