Food is not just meant to attend to the desires of your taste buds. Food is designed to fuel your body so you can smash your goals and feel great while doing so. If you want to take your rugby game to the next level you need to stop treating your body like a beat up Ford Focus and instead treat it like a finely tuned Ferrari.
Most rugby players understand the importance of consuming a high protein diet combined with a healthy does of carbs and moderate fat intake. Rugby athletes know that they should be getting their calories from organic meat, vegetables, fruit and rice. Despite this so many rugby players still start their day by eating unhealthy cereals.
Cereals are one of the worst choices for rugby players to consume in the morning. Breakfast cereals are filled with sugar, have way too many calories and way too few nutrients.
Now rugby players don’t start lamenting about your life without breakfast cereal. In this article we will give you some great, quick and tasty breakfast options to replace your cereal addiction with. First, let’s look at what makes cereal such a bad choice for rugby athletes.
Breakfast Cereal Macros
Cereal is low in fat, low in protein and high in carbs. The majority of those carbs are made up of sugar. Cereals contain very little micronutrients and are very calorie dense ( a small bowl can easily be hundreds of calories).
Why Is Cereal Bad For Rugby Players?
Processed foods have a lot of their nutrients removed. Foods that are devoid of nutrients are unable to nourish our bodies leading to us being fatigued, weak, slower cognitive function and irritable. A rugby athlete who needs their body to perform at its peak can not afford to eat nutrient deficient foods such as cereals.
HIGH SUGAR CONTENT
Cereal is nearly always packed with sugar. The sugar is typically added giving cereal its distinct very sweet taste. Sugar can negatively affect your blood pressure, kidneys and lead to fat gain.
Some cereals have more than a teaspoon of sugar in a single serving. You may as well just be eating candy every time you reach for your favourite cereal in the morning.
As cereal is made up of refined grains and sugar the result is every time you eat cereal you are ingesting very fast acting carbs. These fast acting carbs cause your blood glucose to shoot up and then crash. This is why you will often feel lethargic and hungry within an hour or two of eating your favourite bowl of cereal.
LOADED WITH ADDITIVES
As cereal is processed it is packed full of artificial additives. As a rugby player do you really want to be filling your body with all these nutrient deficient additives that at best won’t help your on field performance but at worst could reduce your playing capabilities? Put the cereal box and stop eating chemicals that have been inserted into your food to make it last longer with no thought to the impact on the consumer’s athletic performance
What Should Rugby Players Eat For Breakfast?
For breakfast rugby players should eat a moderate carb, medium fat and high protein breakfast. The breakfast should be made up of organic whole foods. An example of a healthy breakfast for rugby athletes would be avocado on toast with a banana.
1. MASHED AVOCADO ON TOAST
Avocados are an amazing food filled with nutrients. Avocados are overflowing with healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals, not to mention they are not too bad on the old taste buds. Here is how to quickly incorporate avocado into your breakfast regime
Take 4 slices of brown bread and slap them in your toaster. Grab an avocado and cut in half, then remove the stone and scoop out all the flesh.ripe avocado in half, remove the stone, and scoop the flesh into a bowl. Grind the flesh into a paste, add a bit of lime and season with salt and pepper. Then spread it all over your toast.
If you are itching for some extra protein you can always fry or poach an egg or two.
2. CHIA SEED PUDDING
If you are a health food nut you would have heard of chia seeds. Chia seeds are chock full of protein, fiber and even fats.
To create a chia seed pudding take 6 tablespoons and pour milk over them. If you want to go full health freak you can use soy, rice or almond milk.
Add in some of your favourite fruits to give your pudding a nice sweet flavour and to give your body some carbs to fuel your grueling rugby workout. Some fruits that work well include blueberries, raspberries, sultanas and bananas.
Leave that mixture overnight to soak and then when you wake up the next morning you will have yourself a protein filled, carb loaded super healthy breakfast ready to devour.
3. PEANUT BUTTER AND BANANA BAGEL
If you have no time and you usually would grab for a muffin or a muesli bar, stop! We have a better option for. Get yourself a plain bagel, slap some peanut butter on it. Slice up a banana, place on top of your bagel and drizzle a little bit of honey over it. That should keep you going for a few hours.
4. TRUSTY OLD OATMEAL
Oatmeal is a breakfast people have been munching on for hundreds of years. Oatmeal is breakfast cereal’s older healthier brother. Oatmeal is high in fiber, has little sugar and is a master at providing you with slow acting carbs. Oatmeal is very satiating and will keep you full for hours.
To make your oatmeal super tasty use milk, chop up fruit such as bananas, blueberries or apples and mix honey through it. This oatmeal recipe is a yummy but also nutritious alternative to cereal for rugby players.
5. GREEK YOGURT WITH FRUIT
Greek yogurt is great because it is packed with protein, has low sugar and high levels of calcium. Greek yogurt is also cultured meaning it contains billions of gut-friendly bacteria that will help keep your digestive system strong and healthy.
For this healthy breakfast recipe all rugby players need to do is take a few scoops of Greek yoghurt, mix it with a concoction of their favourite foods and pour some honey over the top.
6. EGGS WITH A SIDE OF EGGS!
There is a reason eggs have become synonymous with bodybuilders. Eggs are high in protein and overloaded with healthy fats. They are also very quick and easy to prepare, can be had with almost anything and taste great.
Eggs have suffered from fake news claiming that they are unhealthy and will cause your cholesterol to skyrocket. This is not true your body produces 1500mg of cholesterol everyday and if you start consuming more cholesterol your body will regulate itself by producing less. Rugby players should be able to consume 1-2 eggs everyday without suffering any negative impact to their cholesterol levels.
If you need some more carbs to go along with your egg filled breakfast then add some brown pieces of bread. If you need some more protein you can fry up some bacon.
If you are a rugby player breakfast should not be just about succumbing to the wants of your tastebuds. Rugby players should use breakfast to ingest high quality nutritious foods that will fuel their workouts so they can perform to the best of their ability on the rugby field. Try one of our recipes tomorrow morning instead of reaching for the cereal box and let us know how you feel at rugby training.