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At the most basic level, nutrition is important for athletes because it provides a source of energy required to perform. The food we eat impacts on our strength training, performance and recovery. Not only is the type of food important for sports nutrition but the times we eat throughout the day also has an impact on our performance levels and our bodies ability to recover after exercising.
Meals eaten before and after exercise are the most important in sports nutrition but you should really be careful with everything that you put into your body. As a general rule of thumb athletes should eat about two hours before exercising and this meal should be high in carbohydrates, low in fat and low to moderate in protein.
Carbohydrates are the main source of energy that powers your exercise regime and protein is required to aid muscle growth and repair. After exercising you need to replace the carbohydrates you have lost and you need to ensure proper muscle recovery by including protein in your post training meal.