Here are some “Tips from the Field” from Darryl Nelson, Strength and Conditioning Coach for USA Hockey's National Team Development Program.
- Eat for your goals and lifestyle. If you want to be an elite player you must eat elite. Eat meals made with wholesome ingredients of the highest quality. This will involve preparing and cooking!
- Avoid quick fixes like snack foods and fast food. Plan ahead by a day or 2 so quality food is always available.
- Cartoon characters are not elite so do not eat foods with cartoon characters on the packaging.
- Drink water. Avoid soda pop, sports drinks, and juice that are loaded with sugar.
Off Season Training Tips
- Plan for time off in the off season. Take a 10 day break from any games, practices, or dryland training at the conclusion of your season.
- Make time to play another sport in the spring. Get outdoors in the fresh air and sunshine and you will reap big rewards (there really is science to support this). Not to mention the added skills you will acquire from playing. My top recommendations are tennis, lacrosse, and baseball.
- Dedicate 2 or 3 hours a week to practicing your skills. This time is for individual practice, not team practice of tactics and strategy and not games.
- Plan for 2 days off from any training each week. This will leave you well rested and energetic when your competitive season begins.