Tips for Taking Care of Your Body as a Student-Athlete

Written by  //  2021/10/18  //  Academics, Athletics  //  Comments Off on Tips for Taking Care of Your Body as a Student-Athlete

Tips for Taking Care of Your Body as a Student-Athlete

Being a student-athlete is all about power, precision, and excellence. As such, we put a lot of emphasis on our body—developing muscle, building endurance, and practicing skills.

But all the pressure we put on our bodies can take its toll after a while, and as a student-athlete, that puts you at higher risk for injury. To keep yourself in the game, you have to take care of yourself, and our tips for taking care of your body as a student-athlete will help.

Fuel Up the Right Way

You can burn thousands of calories a day by playing a sport, so skipping meals should not be part of your care regimen as an athlete. You should be consuming between 2,000 and 3,200 calories depending on the type of sport you’re playing. These calories should be balanced between carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats.

A few foods to add to your diet include:

  • Lean meats
  • Fish
  • Eggs
  • Nuts
  • Legumes
  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Whole grains

You should also keep on top of hydration. A good rule of thumb is to drink at least a cup of water for every 15 minutes of rigorous activity.

Don’t Skip Sleep

As a student-athlete, you have a lot on your plate. Along with your regular practice and workouts, you have to balance classes, homework, and potentially a part-time job. Add your social life to the equation, and sleep can become less of a priority.

But sleep is the time our bodies recover from the wear and tear of regular exercise as well as release growth hormones. Proper sleep also helps improve your coordination and reaction times and keeps your immune system in check. Without adequate sleep, you will be more prone to injuries and illness, which will impact your game.

Manage Your Mental Health

Because of the differentiation between mental and physical health problems, it can seem like the two branches of health aren’t related. But chronic stress, anxiety, and depression have an impact on the physical body in several ways, such as:

  • Muscle tension
  • Decreased immune system function
  • Sleep trouble
  • Increased headaches and migraines
  • Decreased reaction time
  • Stomach pain

Athletes often experience a lot of pressure to perform, so it may feel like it would be better to simply grin and bear it, ignoring emotional distress. But taking care of your body as a student-athlete means taking care of your mind. Your emotional health is worth the care.

Listen To Your Body

Ultimately, you know your body better than anyone else, and it’s important to pay attention to signs that something is wrong. This can be something as simple as noting when you’re experiencing body aches and taking the time to care for it using CBD or resting, or as serious as stopping when you’re injured.

This second point is especially important. If you have an injury such as a sprain or concussion, don’t play through it. Caring for your body today will help you keep playing tomorrow.

image credit: Adobe Stock

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