Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: Misusing prescription drugs can be harmful to your health and impact your participation in sports.

Only take medications that are prescribed to you and follow instructions from the doctor carefully. Prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs including sleeping pills, anti-anxiety drugs and cough and cold remedies can be harmful to your health if you don’t take the medication as directed. Do not take any medications that are prescribed to someone else, side effects can include nausea, dizziness, loss of appetite or even vision loss.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tips of the Week

Tip 1: Being challenged in life is inevitable. Being defeated is optional.

Every time you fail, you move one step closer to succeeding. Embrace failure as part of success and get going. Perseverance will help to overcome challenges; it is easy to become overwhelmed so take it one step at a time

Tip 2: Just one night of binge drinking will erase 2 weeks of practice.

Binge drinking can be defined as consuming five drinks for males and four drinks for females in about two hours. You may show up to practice but you will not see any gains for two weeks. It will also take 96 hours to re-balance hormones and you will see an 11% decrease in your performance.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: It is difficult to reach peak performance and learn new information if under the influence of marijuana.

The effects of marijuana can remain in the body for up to several days and may negatively impact attention, motivation, memory and learning. It can also compromise judgment and affect many other skills necessary to be successful in sports.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: During playoff season it is the healthy teams that have a better chance for success

Be a leader and make your own choices. Set an example to your peers and choose to surround yourself with those making healthy choices. Show your leadership by choosing not to use drugs or alcohol.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: Managing stress does not have to include the use of alcohol or drugs. The best way to handle stress is through healthy habits.

Exercise, healthy eating, sleeping well and maintaining close relationships are important in stress management. These key actions can help reduce stress levels and improve your quality of life. Quick fixes like drugs or alcohol may temporarily mask stress but the long-term effects are unhealthy.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: Athletes who sleep at least 8 hours per night are 68% less likely to sustain an injury compared to those who get less sleep.

Lack of sleep impacts reaction times and performance and causes fatigue. Aim to sleep at least 8 hours per night to maximize muscle growth, repair and recovery. This will also help improve cognitive skills and concentration. All of these factors together can contribute to a lower rate of athletic injuries.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: Celebrate safely during the end of the sports season

Make healthy choices and stay alcohol and drug-free to celebrate the end of your sports season. Plan a dinner out with friends and family, host a game or movie night or take an overnight trip to somewhere new. Take time to reflect on the season and prepare for your next sport or enjoy the off-season.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip: Regularly drinking alcohol before your teen brain is fully developed can impact impulse-control and the memory and learning areas of the brain.

Brain development is still occurring between the ages of 12-26 and scientific research has shown that binge-drinking or regularly drinking alcohol as a teen can result in irreversible brain change.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Tip of the Week: Complex carbohydrates for pre-game fuel equals better performance.

Your body needs energy to perform at its best, and you get that energy from glycogen. Glycogen acts as your body’s fuel source and is found in complex carbohydrates. Eat foods that are rich in starch—potatoes, pasta and rice. It’s extremely important that your body has time to digest the food so eat three hours before you compete to avoid cramping and fatigue during the competition.

Life of a Student Athlete: Tip of the Week

Stay motivated and healthy during spring break

Find a workout buddy to keep you on track during vacation. Drink plenty of water and eat healthy with greens, fruits and vegetables and build muscle with fish, eggs and brown rice. Enjoy outdoor activities with friends and family and also take time to rest and relax.