Nutritional Strategies to Promote Optimal Performance

by Patrick Larcom

Laura Moretti Nutritional Strategies to Promote Optimal PerformanceAt the Institute for Rowing Leadership we're lucky to have Laura Moretti, MS, RD, CSSD, LDN as an instructor for our Sports Nutrition class in the Fall.  She brings a wealth of knowledge, experience, and examples to the fellows as they learn how to optimally fuel their current and future athletes.  Since the topic of this years What Works Summit was Training and Recovery we were excited to have Laura share her thoughts and leadership on the subject with everyone.

Nutrition can often feel like a daunting topic for many athletes. Laura's session at the conference focused on evidence-based nutrition practices and strategies to promote optimal performance in rowers. She discussed the unique fueling needs of rowers in terms of macronutrients, hydration, and supplementation. The session also focused on common dietary pitfalls in the sport of rowing and how to best address these with your team and athletes.

Laura is a Board Certified Sports Dietitian (CSSD) specializing in sports performance based nutrition as well as treating low energy availability, disordered eating, and eating disorders in athletes. After spending six years as the Primary Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Therapist at Appleman Nutrition and Columbus Park Collaborative in New York City,  Laura moved to Boston to take on her current role as Dietitian in the Division of Sports Medicine and the Female Athlete Program at Boston Children’s Hospital.

If you missed Laura Moretti's presentation hopefully the following post will help fill you in and spur some questions on how we can better support and fuel our athletes.

If you're interested in delving deeper, consider applying to the Institute for Rowing Leadership. It's a great way to test your thoughts on the sport and pack years of learning into one intense year!
 
You can see our course catalogue, download the application and find more information on our website or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
 
What Coaches said were key takeaways from the presentation:
  • Lots of practical information that was new to me

  • Importance of a few good carbs before hard workouts, but you don’t need to eat much of anything before a morning easy workout.  

  • Importance of fat to absorb Vitamin D and prevent stress fractures

  • Importance of carbs, otherwise your body will use protein

  • We don’t need too much protein at one sitting - body can only absorb about 30g at once, the rest is wasted (“expensive pee”)

For more content including audio and pro tips be sure to "Read More" below!

LauraMorettiClick here for the following:

Follow Up Questions for Laura:

What is the balance of Carbs and Proteins we should be recommending to our athletes?

  • Carbohydrates (45-65% diet) During Exercise – Carbs enables athletes to exercise longer and harder
    • Adequate carbohydrate intake prevents breakdown of lean body mass for fuel
    • Recommendation: 30-60g CHO/hour (120-240cal)
    • Ex: Gels, Gatorade, etc.
  • Protein (10-35% diet)
    • Important for muscle repair, growth, and recovery. Last option for fuel sources for the body
    • May be increased when focusing on strength building
    • Ex: chicken, fish, beef, dairy, legumes, tofu, nuts

What factors should we consider when trying to improve the recovery of our athletes?

  • Recovery Nutrition - important for the restoration of muscle and liver glycogen stores
    • The Window: 30-45 minutes after exercise
    • The Ratio of Carbs to Proteins - 4:1 [Carbohydrates/Protein]
    • Ex. chocolate milk, fruit flavored yogurt with granola, pb&j

What specifics should we be giving our athletes regarding hydration?

  • Pre-Exercise
    • ~7ml/kg (1oz/10 lbs.) 2 hours before exercise
    • Additional 4ml/kg 20 minutes before exercise for warm environments
  • During Exercise
    • 150-350 ml(6-12 oz) every 15- 20 minutes depending on tolerance
  • Immediately After Exercise
    • 16-24 oz. for every .5 kg (~1 lb.) of body weight lost during exercise

ResizedImage100100 IRL SealLove talking about rowing? Want more than a weekend? 

Come to the Institute for Rowing Leadership and pack years of learning into one intense year! The IRL is accepting applications on a rolling basis.
 
Check out our course catalogue, download the application and find more information on our website or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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