Health & FitnessOctober 14, 2014

Make The Turn Weekly Challenge #32: Back 9 Snacks

Leaving the house with a healthy meal under your belt doesn't mean your work is done. A day on the course requires that you keep your body fueled and your mind sharp for the long haul.

Too often golfers think of snacks as something they throw in their bag or grab at the turn. Unfortunately, many snack choices are processed foods high in sugar and/or refined carbs, such as pretzels, crackers, cookies, granola bars, etc. In addition, they're usually low in quality protein and natural fats. Consuming such nutritionally inadequate foods is a sure way to find yourself riding the bogey train on the back nine!

The key is making a commitment to consuming more nutritionally balanced, whole foods. Failure to prepare is preparing to fail. Plan ahead and enjoy delicious treats that provide consistent energy and maximum focus. Start by replacing refined carbs (those pretzels) with simple whole foods (walnuts). Stop focusing on calories and start focusing on nutrients. Always read labels and, although it might seem obvious, avoid foods containing words you can't pronounce.

Enjoy snacks with natural fats, like avocado, nuts, nut butters, seeds, etc. Sustainable energy is NOT about eating low-fat items, but rather finding low-sugar alternatives. If you like something that has a bit of a sweetness, try including some fresh fruit. Always balance carbs with protein and fat when possible. Fat lowers the glycemic load of any type of carbohydrate, meaning the sugar from that food enters the blood at a much slower rate. The lower the food's glycemic load, the better. Fat also provides high satiation, keeping you full long after you eat so you can focus on the shot at hand instead of your growling stomach.

Commit to planning ahead in the snack department and you can count this nutrition challenge as complete!

BENEFITS

Increased Energy

Improved Mental Focus

Shoot Lower Scores

Jeff Ritter is the CEO/Founder of__ MTT Performance__. The program operates out of Poppy Hills Golf Course in Pebble Beach, Calif. Follow him on Twitter at @mttgolf*

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