As a female athlete, you’re always looking to improve your performance and results. From using compression garments during training to pump up the skeletal muscle to prioritizing a healthy diet, the life of athletes is definitely not an easy one, especially for females who have to undergo various hormonal and bodily changes.
Based on sports psychology, when you push yourself past your mental and physical limits, your body needs more raw materials to sustain your efforts. Therefore, when female athletes are asked for the most basic requirements in their day-to-day lives, the needs are basic but reflect the beneficial impact on the athletes for better performance. These basic requirements include:
- Training & Workout Schedule: To consistently improve performance, a focused physical training and workout routine is one of the primary needs for all athletes. From warming up to stretching to Yoga, female athlete undergoes customized training routines based on their goals and physical condition as needed for the results in a given sport.
- Gears: For various sports such as football, basketball, swimming, etc., the use of gear and garments are known to be highly useful during the post-competition and post-work-out recovery phase.
- Multi-Vitamins/Nutritional Needs: Your body has reserves of many nutrients, but they will only maintain high-performance levels for so long. Eventually, you’ll deal with fatigue, slow recovery, frequent injuries, and accelerated aging.
When choosing a multivitamin to support your bodybuilding and fitness efforts, the cheapest product off the shelf isn’t going to cut it. Here’s what you need to know about multivitamins for athletes and how to find the best one for you.
Workout Gear Requirements for Female Athletes:
To ensure your workout is productive and efficient, you need to consider suitable sports clothing. Even a missing sock can become a recipe for chafing and blisters during intensive workout sessions. Depending on the training workout, some essential clothing items to pack can include a Sports bra, fresh pair of a headband, a tie, a swimsuit, goggles, workout tops, and bottoms such as leggings, sweatpants, and shorts.
From fashionable compression socks for women to compression race suits for runners, these gear are high in demand, boosting blood circulation to accelerate the exchange of nutrients and oxygen in the blood. It’s important to consider how comfortable your clothes are and what fabric they are made of, and they are suitable for the workout sessions you will be engaged in. Also don’t forget to pack your microfibre towel to keep sweat and germs from using others. 🙂
This might be a noticeable gear for a workout, but it’s also essential to consider the type of shoes you would require for a specific workout. For example, you certainly don’t want to see yourself with bulky shoes in a spinning class or for running.
Consider picking all-purposeless and sports shoes. If you are into a specific sport, it is advisable to pair the correct type of shoe for that activity to avoid any mishap. For example, there are shoes for cross-training, weightlifting, indoor and outdoor running, rock climbing, etc.
Heart Rate Monitor:
It is unnecessary, but it is beneficial for an active athlete, especially if you are doing interval training or pushing yourself to the anaerobic phase. In addition, some wristband-style monitors come in handy and offer functions such as respiration and heart tracking, and pedometer.
Nutritional Requirements for Female Athletes: The Basics
You probably already know that high-intensity athletes need more calories than the average person. Depending on how hard you train, you might need as many as 3,000 calories per day.
But it’s also important to know that you may need more of certain other nutrients. For example, the energy you need to train hard comes from nutrition, so prioritizing it is just as important as training.
Here the nutrients that are especially important for female athletes include:
- Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are a key energy source, not only for high-intensity exercise but also for staying healthy. All carbs aren’t created equal, though. Healthy carbs come from whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
- Fat: Fat is essential for energy, cardiovascular health, balanced hormones, and regulating inflammation. Focus on healthy fats like nuts, seeds, avocados, olive and coconut oil, fatty fish, and pasture-raised eggs, meat, and dairy.
- Protein: Your body uses protein for muscle growth and repair. Prioritizing high-quality, lean protein will help you recover faster. Pasture-raised meat, eggs, and dairy are all great protein sources to include in your diet daily.
- Vitamins and Minerals: Vitamins and minerals play a part in nearly every body process. Even slight deficiencies can lead to issues with growth and recovery, hormonal balance, energy levels, stamina, and much more. Eating a wide variety of healthy foods and taking a multivitamin each day will help to ensure that all of your nutritional needs are met.
How to Choose the Best Multivitamin
Walking down the supplement aisle of any store will reveal hundreds of multivitamins to choose from. It’s easy to see why anyone would be overwhelmed. Here are some tips to help you choose the best multivitamin for you.
- Go with a customized formula
Your nutritional needs are influenced by a variety of factors, including diet, lifestyle, age, overall health, activity level, and even your DNA. Unfortunately, choosing a product off the shelf at your local store means you’re getting a one-size-fits-all generic formula that may or may not include the nutrients you really need.
You are much better off going with made-for-you vitamins that are created just for you. Several forward-thinking multivitamin companies utilize lifestyle quizzes, bloodwork, and even DNA analysis to create custom vitamin formulas. It’s the best way to know that you’re getting the vitamins and minerals your body needs.
- Check the potency of any multivitamin you’re considering
Female athletes can also develop nutrient deficiencies due to repeated high-intensity exercise and physical stress. Choosing a high-potency vitamin ensures that you’re replenishing the nutrients you need for training and competing.
- Avoid fillers
Choose products that are free of fillers, which can be harmful and indicate a low-grade brand. You want a multivitamin that contains at least 90% active ingredients.
- Look for a money-back guarantee
Reputable companies will stand behind their product with a 90-day guarantee. That way, you can give the product some time to see if it’s working for you or not. But, once again, everyone is different. If a product isn’t doing anything for you, you’ll want to return it and try something else.
- Choose all-natural over synthetic.
Vitamins and minerals that come from all-natural, natural food sources are more easily absorbed by the body. Avoid anything that contains synthetic ingredients that might do more harm than good.
Key Ingredients to Look for in a Multivitamin for Athletes
A high-intensity athlete requires specific vitamins and minerals to maximize their performance and recovery. Here are a few key ingredients to look for, no matter which vitamin brand you choose.
- B-Vitamins: B-complex vitamins are crucial for metabolism and energy levels. They’re essential for high-endurance and high-intensity athletes or anyone who lives a high-stress lifestyle.
- Iron: Iron is crucial for high-intensity athletes because extreme exercise can deplete your body’s energy stores. It is essential for moving oxygen in the blood, dramatically impacting physical performance. Iron deficiency contributes to energy and endurance issues, even in young female athletes.
- Zinc is crucial for recovery, particularly wound healing and tissue repair.
- Calcium: Calcium is crucial for bone health. Keeping your calcium levels up supports bone density and reduces stress fractures and joint injuries. It’s also a key player in nerve function and hormone release.
- Venotonics – Venous insufficiency is a circulatory disorder that primarily affects the legs and is more common among women. Female athletes can take natural venotonic supplements to combat venous insufficiency and stay ahead of this potential issue from continual standing.
To prepare for an intensive workout session, female athletes condition in advance with their gears, essential equipment, and critical nutritional diet intake. It’s important to remember that multivitamin intake is not a replacement for eating a healthy diet. The majority of your nutrition should still come from food. However, taking a high-quality multivitamin can get you past those plateaus and give you an overall edge in performance and recovery with proper fit and workout gear. Even better, you’ll have more energy and a more robust immune system, which will improve your performance in other areas, not just in the gym.
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