Swim Bits – April 2017 1


The secret’s out.  Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are good for you, especially before a game or workout.  The NBA has declared it so. Cf. http://www.espn.com/espn/feature/story/_/page/presents18931717/the-nba-secret-addiction/.

Every morning I have two WASA light rye crackers covered with peanut butter and jelly with my tea, even when I go to workout on the weekends, 7-9 AM.  The peanut butter does not bother my stomach during workout; it also provides me some vegetable oil to slowly digest during workout; the jelly gives me some instant pickup from its fructose; I get long lasting carbohydrate from the rye cracker.  What’s not to like?

We athletes are always searching for a magic mix of food to lean on during workouts and at meets.  I’ve always believed in the KISS method, Keep It Simple Swimmer.  There are three basic premises I work on.  I must eat something before workout.  It must be easily digestible and not bother me.  It must be healthy.

What better than peanut butter and jelly on whole wheat bread or WASA crackers?  Add a suitable fluid of choice (mine is hot tea), and swim.  NBA players agree, and they are some of the best conditioned athletes I’ve ever seen.

If I know I have a long workout or swim ahead of me (3600+ workout; 1650 and up swim), I will also take along a thermos with orange juice spiked with Accelerade, “The Protein-Powered Sports Drink.”  Its first two ingredients are sucrose and whey protein concentrate.  It, too, doesn’t bother my stomach upon ingestion or later during the effort.

The sucrose is diluted by the orange juice, and it has been proven we need protein during and after long distance swims and hard work outs.  Some swimmers swear the combination will also avoid cramps in swims over 3K.  I’ll check that out this summer.

So come better prepared to workouts and meets in the future.  Stoke up on peanut butter and jelly just like the pro-basketball players do.


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