The Top 10 Foods For Strikers
The day of the poacher is gone - and I’m not talking about poached eggs.
A striker can no longer get away with a couple of moments of sheer genius and spend the rest of the game standing around idly waiting for just the right through ball. They must track back, defend set pieces and work their socks off for the good of the team.
Oh, and they still have to score.
The great modern-day forward must pretty much have it all - speed, explosiveness, fleet of foot, a quick mind and, not least, a nose for goal.
So they need stamina foods and lots of protein as a foundation for the gym sessions. Leicester City and England striker Jamie Vardy hardly stops chasing all game; the next day he can hardly walk his legs are so tired.
The idea of the old center forward muscling the ball into the back of the net from corners belongs to another century. The key is preparation.
Vardy, for instance, is a throwback in terms of his physicality, but not his approach. His rise from non-league soccer was no fluke. When he first arrived at Leicester he was warned about his drinking and his diet and was told he simply would not succeed unless he was more focused. He took notice and his progress snowballed with his dedication and his decision to carefully monitor what he ate and drank.
I have little doubt Vardy’s career would have tipped the opposite direction if he’d ignored the nutritional advice.
Modern wingers are quite likely to play wing back and vice versa; in fact so many more positions on the soccer field are interchangeable because of the greater fitness and acknowledgement that nutrition is key.
In the days of strikers like Jimmy Greaves and even Robbie Fowler, the post-training warm-down was quite likely to involve a few beers in the local pub and a bag of chips. That’s not going to work anymore.
Here’s what you don’t want to eat as a striker: refined sugars, white flour, processed meats, energy drinks, hydrogenated foods, high fructose corn syrup, sugary cereals, sweeteners and creamers. They are dead foods, have no nutritional content, will make you sick - and they’re sure going to slow you down.
Here are the foods you should eat:
For vitamin K2 for strong bones and a healthy heart. Eat them whole, the whites have a nutrient and saturated fat deficiency and the lecithin in the yolk is essential to lower blood fat and improve liver and brain function that keeps you sharp. K2 also found in sauerkraut, liver, fatty meats and soft cheeses.
For Omega 3 to reduce any inflammation, lower blood pressure and help blood arteries relax and dilate for more energy. Nuts should be eaten raw and fresh, never roasted. Also found in fish like salmon, sardines and mackerel, grass fed beef, broccoli and cauliflower.
3. Coconut Oil
For Omega 6. Alternatively cook with palm oil or butter. Use olive oil unheated or very low heat. Also in yams, brie, macadamia nuts avocados and olives. Another alternative is Premier EFA oil.
For nitric acid to boost oxygen intake. Also in pomegranate. Supplement with Premier Max B and Nitro-7.
For healthy proteins. Lean grass fed organic beef, lamb, chicken, fish, whole eggs. Any toxins will make you stiff and lose flexibility.
6. Buckwheat or Brown Rice
For the complex carbs you need from whole grains. For sustained energy release to promote long endurance.
7. Apples or Oranges
For blood sugar fuel to keep the body running strong. Just be careful of too much sugar - bananas, cherries mangos and grapes have highest sugar content so eat in moderation. Frozen fruit and veggies are fine but shun the cans. Cherries, strawberries and grapes are laden with pesticides unless organic.
For even more healthy protein.
For brain power and healthy digestion. Best soaked to get the germination process going. Stay away from processed beans in cans.
To keep going between meals and boost energy. Yes to sliced carrots, celery and cucumber or soaked raw almonds or sunflower seeds. No to rice crispy treats and chocolate chip cookies!