Nearly 50% of participants in high impact sports are female, and yet, only 10% of research into sport focuses specifically on the female athlete. Whether you’re looking into carb loading or supplements, the guidance provided by health companies is based on male bodies only.
So as a female motocross rider, you might be wondering about nutrition. In this article, we’ll discuss the key nutritional guidelines for female athletes based on this research paper on the subject.
Female motocross riders are advised to fuel up
It’s wise to eat regularly and plan your calorie intake for big training days. It’s a good idea to aim for 45 calories per kilo of fat free mass (ie: the weight of your muscles, bones and body mass that isn’t fat).
The standard guidance for carb loading may not be appropriate for female motocross riders because they generally have a lower caloric intake than their male counterparts. If you’re going out on a 5 hour ride, you want to make sure you’re fuelled up throughout the ride as well as afterwards. If you’re feeling exhausted at the end of a long ride, it’s likely you’re not eating enough.
Consider supplements to address nutrient deficiencies
It’s common for female athletes, including female motocross riders to experience deficiencies in micronutrients such as iron, vitamin D and calcium. To address these deficiencies it’s important to eat a diverse range of foods or consider taking supplements.
Because female athletes lose blood every month, female motocross riders are more susceptible to iron deficiencies. It’s a good idea to get your iron levels tested each year. On top of that, try to eat a diet that contains lots of iron-rich foods rather than relying on supplements alone.
Vitamin D, on the other hand, is harder to come by in our food, which is why it makes sense to take a supplement.
Pay attention to hormonal fluctuations
As a female motocross rider, it’s important to pay attention to your nutrition and hydration needs during different phases of your menstrual cycle. Fluctuations in your estrogen and progesterone can have an effect on your metabolism and fluid retention. Pay attention to your cycle and look for signs or changes. If your cycle disappears completely you should take it seriously, as your body is giving you a cue that something is off and it could be related to your nutrition. It isn’t normal for female motocross riders to not menstruate.
Protecting yourself as a female motocross rider
Now that you know what to consider when it comes to nutrition as a female motocross rider, it’s time to consider how you protect your physical body. Fempro Armour is designed by women for women.
Born out of a desire to protect women in motocross and other high impact sports, Fempro Armour provides better protection through female designed body armour and garments that reflect who women are and celebrate the sport we love to do. Check out our range of protective gear here.