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SF 0003: Nutrition When Traveling to Competitions

Nutrition When Traveling to Competitions

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The Question:

What happens when we have to travel to our daughters competitions? What are your suggestions for no kitchens, but good energy for very early mornings when she’s not too hungry but must fuel up?

The Answer:

Hello again and welcome to the Stay Fueled Podcast. This is Dr. Joshua Eldridge, the founder of Stay Fueled and I am excited that you are here today to listen to our question from Trisha. And what Trisha says is, “What happens when we have to travel to our daughter’s competitions? What’s your suggestions for no kitchens good energy for early morning starts?”

And so, what she’s saying is when we have to travel long distance or hop on the airplane and go to these different competitions that we have to go to and there’s no kitchens, what do we do to make sure our young athlete is getting exactly what she needs to succeed?

And what a great question from Trisha and thank you so much for submitting that. So here’s the deal. We have to make their pre-competition meals, we have to make it routine. So let’s say she’s asking about early morning type things where there’s not really any way to make the meals in a kitchen. So most likely, it’s going to have to be cold or using the hot water maker or something like that.

So what I’d like to see is leading up to this competition, I’d like to see her trying things out a couple of months before competition season. And then leading up to that actual competition day where they’re going to be traveling, the four weeks before that, I want to see them having the same thing every Saturday morning. Let’s say the competition’s on a Saturday, that they’re having the same thing on Saturday morning that they’re going to have on that competition day so that the body of this young athlete is ready to accept this food that she’s going to be eating and she’s used to it, and then she’s able to perform.

So most of our athletes don’t really practice on Saturdays. So it works out so that we can try out this food, whatever we’re going to give our young athlete. And then, what we can do is have them go outside and play for a while. Go out there and use their energy and see how they feel and make sure that this is the pre-competition meal that we want to give them.

Now, what I recommend for Trisha is to take along some type of blender. And I know it sounds like a lot to pack on the airplane and put into the your travel bags, but I think a blender is a perfect thing that you can do because once you get to the place where you’re going, you can make a smoothie. The best is to use frozen fruit and vegetables, but I also know that they’re not going to have a whole lot of freezer capacity. So go to the store the night before and get those frozen fruits and vegetables that you want to put into the smoothie that you’ve tried before to make sure that your athlete can take care of those with their body and accept them. And then, the next morning, just put them in the blender with Greek yoghurt and some juice and blend that all up, and that’s going to be an awesome pre-competition meal.

And it might even be something that is really easy for their bodies to take in because they’re going to be nervous before competition and they’re just going to be worried. So something that they drink might even be easier on their stomach than something that they eat if you go to a restaurant or something like that and get food that they haven’t had, leading up to the competition.

So thanks, Trisha, for the question. That’s a great question. I hope that answer helps you. Make sure it’s routine, make sure you’ve been eating the same thing leading up to competition, and then reproducing the competition-like things at home; having your athlete go outside and run around and play.

So this was brought to you by Stay Fueled. With Stay Fueled, we like to provide the planning for you so that you don’t have to. We provide menus and recipes, delicious recipes, and then we tie it altogether with a shopping list. So that’s what Stay Fueled is, is it’s nutrition for busy families with young athletes and we’d love to be a part of your family, helping you as a busy parent provide great nutrition for your young athlete.

If you haven’t headed over to Stay Fueled yet and gotten our three-part series on recovery, make sure you do that. All you have to do is join our email list and you will get that right in your inbox, the three-part series on recovery, and it’s going to change the way that you take care of your athletes, especially after practice, getting them ready for the next practice. And we talk about recovery, we talk about nutrition, we talk about the different other adjunct therapies that you can do to provide great care for your young athlete to make sure that they stay injury-free and increase their performance.

This has been Dr. Joshua Eldridge with Stay Fueled and I can’t wait to see you next time on the Stay Fueled Podcast. Have an awesome day!.

  • AStableBeginning

    Thanks for sharing this information! We are just about to travel to Orlando for a meet this weekend and I was wondering what to feed my gymnast before her 8:30 am session. Can you share a smoothie recipe that will pack enough punch to get her through her meet? Thanks again! Jacquelin

    • Joshua Eldridge


      Great comment and question! Here’s a post with one of my favorite!

      But, since you’re going this weekend, make sure you try it out tomorrow morning and see how she does with it. If she likes it and she has energy for school, recess, and practice, you’re on the right track!!!

      If it’s not enough, try adding more flax or increasing the amount. If she doesn’t like the taste, play around with the ingredients for Thursday morning and try again!

      • AStableBeginning

        Thanks Dr. Josh! I am heading out to the store tonight to pick up he items. Can Chia seeds be found at the grocery store? I will be sure to try it for the next few days to get her body used to it. Thanks again!

        • AStableBeginning

          Just thought of another question. How early should I her drink the smoothie before the meet starts?

          • Joshua Eldridge

            Depending on how nervous she is before the meet….if she’s nervous give her more time. Somewhere between 45 minutes and 1 1/2 hours.

    • Joshua Eldridge

      Jacquelin, They can be found at the grocery store and usually Bob’s Red Mill in the organic section has them….let me know which one you find!