TO ACHIEVE OPTIMAL RIDING PERFORMANCE
I had a request from a reader of my facebook page ‘Equestrian Fitness’, asking me for some strategies to get back on track. Now like any athlete, the equestrian athlete will go off the rails at some stage. I cannot condone this as a fitness professional but I understand that it does
I thought I would start with the Liver. Our liver is our one of our major organs of elimination.
It is an extremely hardworking organ in that it everything that goes into our mouths must be processed by our liver.
The liver has many functions including the breaking down of toxic chemicals – alcohol and pesticides as well as the storage of many compounds (Glycogen, vitamin D, A and many B vitamins). It’s probably fair to assume that the liver will have been burdened even if not by alcohol, but by the sheer quantities and perhaps the types of foods we consumed over the silly season!
The liver also plays a role in blood sugar regulation. It has the ability to convert stored Glycogen (obtained from the intake of Carbohydrate) into Glucose for release into the blood to help regulate blood sugar levels if it is needed. The liver also plays a role in manufacturing of proteins, which contribute to blood clotting and libido, transportation of substances around our body. Not forgetting the well known protein, High Density Lipoprotein (HDL) – responsible for removal of cholesterol from vessel walls to the liver for excretion, therefore making it an important factor in cardiovascular health.
So, let’s help you get back on track!
1. Drink approximately 1 litre of filtered water per 50lbs of bodyweight, per day – this will help cleanse the liver and kidneys and help with weight loss.
2. Add milk thistle to your water. I recommend my equestrian athletes drink around 400mg per day.
3. Decrease alcohol intake ! No brainer here!!
4. Avoid sugar – particularly refined. Our liver converts sugar into fat. Also high sugar foods create an acidic environment in our blood.
5. Avoid excess saturated fats – eaten regularly these will harm your liver. These are typically found in animal fat and fats that are solid at room temperature.
6. Increase raw fruit and vegetables – especially dark green leafy veggies – these will help support your liver and its ability to detoxify.
7. Eat organically where possible – this will reduce the amount of toxins that your liver needs to process.
These tips are simple measures that you can put into place in your daily life, not only to support your liver after a period of over indulgence, but in everyday living. In return being rewarded with increased energy and vitality to enjoy your life to the max!
CHRISTMAS OATS AND APPLES
• ¾ cup of water
• ¾ cup of freshly squeezed apple juice
• 1 teaspoon of cinnamon (an excellent antioxidant)
• ½ apple
• ¾- 1 cup of oats
• 1 egg or tablespoon of walnuts
• 2 tablespoons of bio live yoghurt. (Compliant with my Nutritional plan)
Pop the water, apple juice and cinnamon in the pan, bring to the boil. Once that is achieved, turn down the heat, crack in the egg (replace with walnuts if you don’t like egg), pop in the oats and apple and stir on the lower heat until the juice is almost all gone. I like to pop a couple of tablespoons of natural organic bio live yoghurt on the side; it just takes the heat out of the apple bits. It ends up tasting like an apple crumble, but it’s good for you!
Have a great day,
The Equestrian Athlete Coach