Firing up the Dragon

FIRING UP THE DRAGON: Gleaned from Prez’s Archives

The Campbell River Dragon is an omnivore – she needs a balanced diet of meat and vegetable matter.  As she grows and increases her level of activity, what she ingests becomes more and more significant in order to enhance her fire breathing skills and boost her level of performance.

Water, water everywhere: (What every fire-breathing dragoness needs to know about hydration)

  • By the time her thirst mechanism kicks in she is already becoming dehydrated
  • Even mild dehydration can slow down her metabolism as much as 3%
  • Lack of water is the #1 trigger of her daytime fatigue
  • 8-10 glasses of water per day could significantly ease her back and joint pain
  • A 2% drop in her body water can trigger fuzzy, short-term memory and difficulty focusing
  • Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases her risk of colon cancer, breast cancer and bladder cancer
  • Her body thrives on proper hydration and she should aim for 1.5 litres per day (and Master Fire-Breathing Dragon coaches need this, too!)

Fire-breathing power for paddling:  (Why carbs for those fire-breathers?)

  • Her body runs most efficiently when she eats a balance of carbohydrates, proteins and fats BUT carbs are the first energy source her body uses to perform exercise
  • Unless she consumes carbohydrates, muscle glycogen stores will become depleted, resulting in muscle fatigue
  • She knows that complex carbohydrate snacks release energy slowly and  are essential to sustain optimal energy levels
  • She definitely needs to consume carbs the night before race day
  • Her best sources:
    • whole grain pasta
    • whole grain cereals
    • legumes
    • fresh fruit
    • starchy vegetables

Buffing up the Dragon’s muscle mass: (Quality protein for those fire-breathers)

  • Quality protein sources are essential to repair and build muscle, grow tissue and control metabolism for her great body
  • Most of  her body’s proteins are continually broken down and protein cannot be stored for later use, like fat or carbs, so she needs to replenish daily
  • The more active she is, the faster her proteins break down
  • The best high protein foods for the dragoness are “complete proteins” – low in saturated fat and contain high amounts of quality protein that can be more easily utilized by her body
  • Her best sources:
    • eggs
    • fish
    • fowl
    • kidney beans
    • lean red meat
    • low fat dairy (cottage cheese, yoghurt, milk)
    • soy products
    • nuts and seeds
    • hemp seeds
    • quinoa
    • whey protein shakes / smoothies
  • Recipe for Prez’s Power Smoothie
Blend together:
    • 1 cup juice or milk
    • 1 scoop of 100% whey protein powder
    • 2 tbsp hemp seeds or ground flax seeds
    • ½ cup yoghurt
    • ½ banana
    • ½ cup granola or muesli
    • 1 cup frozen berries

Training session survival with the Master Fire-Breathing Dragon coach: (How a fire-breathing dragoness can ensure she’ll still be breathing fire after training)

  • Prior to major fire output:
    • 30-60 minutes prior to exerting major fire breathing power she needs to eat a small carbohydrate rich snack that includes protein (eg. yoghurt and fruit)
    • She should drink approximately 500 ml of fluid 2 to 3 hours before, and 250 ml just before the master fire-breather demands maximum output
  • During major fire output:
    • She needs to consume small amounts of fluid throughout
  • Recovering from major fire output:
    • Within 30 minutes of completing training she should down a carbohydrate rich snack with some protein (one of her best choices:  chocolate milk – it contains the perfect balance of carbs, protein and calories for post exercise glycogen resynthesis and storage)
    • She still needs to focus on hydration and replacing her depleted electolytes by drinking plenty of fluid (sport drink), eating a banana, etc.

Fab foods for determined dragonesses: (What to eat to build that fire breathing power)

  • Leafy, green vegetables – especially kale, collards, spinach and broccoli
  • Tomatoes
  • Pink grapefruit
  • Berries
  • Soybean products
  • Fibre
  • Ground flaxseeds
  • Garlic
  • Legumes
  • Wild salmon
  • Nuts and seeds – especially walnuts, almonds, pecans and pumpkin seeds
  • Green tea
  • Plain yoghurt
  • Whole grains
  • Honey