Some people have asked how I approach games in terms of nutrition and supplementation. While I believe the weeks leading up to a competition are crucial, the things done during the day of competition are too often overlooked. If you're staying disciplined that day, then you're going to forfeit all that you worked so hard for the weeks prior! Below, if you will, is my "Competition Stack," as it combines multiple brands and products.
Keep in mind, I'm not sponsored by a supplement company! I get no money, free product or help from any of these brands. I get nothing. This is what is working for me, and something I've been doing since 2010. I will say that Kevin and Chuck at The Smoothie Shop & Supplements here in the Kansas City area helped me tweak this a couple of years ago. If you're in the area, this place, in my opinion, is where you should be getting your stuff and your insight as Chuck is a dietitian, and he and Kevin (the owner) are some great brothers in Christ.
Okay, disclaimer done. Here's a few things I bring with me to each competition to keep me fueled and ready to compete during the long day.
1. Water - Drink lots of it. Duh, right? You know this and you know how critical it is. If you're not using the Porta-Potty during the day, then you're not drinking enough.
2. Gatorade - Drink lots of it. I start pounding Gatorade (or Powerade) during the second event. Games will most likely not have many of these, if any, for you to consume, so bring your own each time.
3. Protein Bars - Buy a couple of these and always have them on hand. You never know if lunch will be provided for you, but you'll need these anyways. Just about any brand will work - I like the Met-RX Big 100 Colossal Bars just because the protein is high, and the same goes for the calories and carbs. I'll try to eat one or two throughout the day, but usually will start munching one by event three. Don't eat it all at once; take a few big bites in between events.
4. BCAAs - Branch Chain Amino Acids. I've been using Scivation Xtend for years and they have a number of flavors to satisfy any preference. You're outside for hours on end, exerting high amounts of energy for maximum effort throws; it's a given you'll need some BCAAs. By the third event, I've got these churning in my bottle and down the hatch. Don't chug it, just keep taking drinks of it.
5. Waxy Maize Starch - Simply put, these are carbs. Unflavored, chalky powdered carbs. You are burning so many calories all day, you need to keep fueling yourself. There are plenty of good options, just look for something with a serving size around 30-50 grams of carbs. I've always used the stuff from Allmax and they now make a flavored version called CARBION. Personally, I like the unflavored as it doesn't have the sweet taste to it, and I can easily mix it with my Gatorade. The starch will settle, so don't be alarmed when you come back to your bottle and it is lining the bottom. Just shake it up every time you drink.
6. Combine It - I like to put BCAAs and Waxy Maize Starch in my Gatorade. With this "Uber Drink," I can get all that I need while minimizing times mixing things and carrying around a bunch of bottles. For this, I like to get a very bland Gatorade (Orange is a good option) and mix in my favorite flavor of Xtend, or get similar flavors if you have it.
Not that I would EVER compare myself to a marathon runner or triathlete, but one of the keys to being successful in those sports is their ability to feed their body throughout the competition. That's why they consume food and supplement gels all day. The mistake many "gamers" make is neglecting to feed their bodies throughout the day. They wait until lunch to eat, stuff themselves with food, then can't seem to find the energy for the last half of the day. I've done this. Or, they don't want to run to the Porta-Potty, so they don't drink much then wind up in a massive body cramp during the last events, moaning and thrashing on the ground. Yep, did this too!
Hydrate. Fuel. Compete. Repeat.
Best of luck to everyone the rest of the season!