Applied Nutrition for Mixed Sports


The nature of mixed sports makes determining nutritional requirements more complex than for strength/power or endurance athletes. Applied Nutrition for Mixed Sports examines the topic with a focus on application and all aspects of nutrition for these sports are built-up to provide a template for optimal nutrition. The package includes an 80-page book with a 2-DVD seminar.

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About The Applied Nutrition for Mixed Sports Book/DVD Package

Applied Nutrition for Mixed Sports examines the topic of nutrition for what I like to refer to as mixed sports. This includes almost all team sports along with many individual sports such as boxing, mixed martial arts and some track and field events.

Basically any sport that has requirements for both endurance and strength/power is considered a mixed sport. Because of the often odd nature of performance requirements, optimizing nutrition for these sports often presents problems that aren’t seen in either the pure strength/power sports (such as throwing, sprinting or weightlifting) or pure endurance sports (such as running or cycling).

The book, as well as the accompanying 2 DVD set, approaches the problem in an applied fashion building up the topic of nutrition from the ground up to present a comprehensive examination of how mixed sports athletes can optimize their nutrition.

This product started life as a seminar I did in Vancouver at Simon Fraser University in 2009 for their football and soccer teams on applied sports nutrition.  But rather than just slap the DVD together with the handouts and slides, I decided to write a complete stand alone book (derived primarily from the handouts).  Of course, the original DVD seminar is included along with the Powerpoint slides and the full package includes everything shown below.

Please note: The DVDs have no regional encoding and should play on any DVD player or computer with DVD capabilities.


Applied Nutrition for Mixed Sports Package



Book Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Some Unapplied Theory
Chapter 2: General and Performance Nutrition
Chapter 3: Energy Intake
Chapter 4: Dietary Protein
Chapter 5: Dietary Fat
Chapter 6: Dietary Carbohydrates
Chapter 7: Vitamins and Minerals
Chapter 8: Meal Planning
Chapter 9: Around Workout/Competition Nutrition
Chapter 10: Hydration and Cramping
Chapter 11: Supplements
Chapter 12: Changing Body Composition
Chapter 13: Putting it All Together
Chapter 14: The End


DVD Table of Contents

Disk 1
Module 1: Introduction + A Little Unapplied Theory (12:41)
Module 2: General and Performance Nutrition (35:32)
Module 3: Meal Planning (14:19)
Module 4: Around Workout Nutrition (32:13)

Disk 2
Module 5: Hydration and Cramping (15:43)
Module 6: Supplements (39:23)
Module 7: Changing Body Composition (18:22)
Module 8: Putting it All Together (11:03)



The following is the entirety of Chapter 1: Some Unapplied Theory.

As I mentioned in the introduction, mixed sports tend to have some fairly unique nutritional and physiological requirements which make them distinct from either pure endurance or strength-power sports. To make this more clear, I want to present something I call the sports continuum.

In Figure 1 below, I’ve drawn a line with pure strength/power sports at one end and pure endurance sports at the other. In-between those two are team sports such as basketball, football, soccer, hockey, etc. I call these mixed sports and there are other examples that aren’t team based (e.g. MMA, boxing). This will make more sense in a second.


The Sports Continuum


Now, it should be clear that sports don’t fall neatly into these three distinct categories and it would be more accurate to place different sports at different places on the line. As well, especially regarding team sports, there can be differences between positions even in the same sport. So simply use the above distinction as one of convenience and nothing more.

In keeping with this concept, there are clearly going to be differences in what types of training the different categories of sport will have to primarily engage in as the major part of their training. This is shown in Figure 2 on the next page.


The Training Continuum


So hopefully you can see part of why the mixed sports activities present the unique requirements that they do. Effectively, the mixed sports, and again this depends on many variables, have to mix types of training from both the pure strength/power and pure endurance end of the continuum.

And, as you might expect, the primary adaptations seen in the different sports are, well…different. This is shown in Figure 3 below.


The Adaptation Continuum


And the above figure is really the major take-home message of this chapter as it applies to nutrition and this book. Clearly different sports require a certain set of adaptations which are stimulated by the specific types of training done.

But while training is what stimulates the necessary adaptations, nutrition is what supports those adaptations (outside of the ones related to neural factors). The specifics of the training (which are determined by the nature of the adaptations sought) determines what nutrition is required to optimally support it.

And this is worth mentioning for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, many sports nutritionists fall into a one-sized fits all set of nutrition recommendations that don’t fit anybody; everyone gets the same dietary recommendations regardless of sport.

Going further, there is often a proximity bias that occurs in folks who write about nutrition. Pure endurance athletes tend to think that all athletes are like them and often recommend carbohydrate amounts that are too high and protein intakes that are too low for other sports. Similarly, pure strength/power athletes, for whom 5 repetitions is considered ‘aerobic’ work often decry carbohydrates at all with a focus solely on protein (and fat).

But neither extreme of dietary recommendations is necessarily appropriate for mixed sports athletes. As noted above in the figures and text, there is a mix of adaptations and training styles that are performed depending on the specifics of the sport, the position within that sport and other factors. Mixed sports have to ‘cover’ at least some of the nutritional requirements of each of the extreme categories.

Even within a given sport, different positions can live on different parts of the continuum. An American football lineman may train and eat very much like a pure strength/power sport since the primary requirement is being an immovable wall that rarely has to move more than a few yards at a time. A running back is more akin to a sprinter with different nutritional requirements reflecting the demands of their position.

Hopefully, you can see that other sports can have similarly varied demands depending on the specifics of the sport in general and the position in specific. For example, while rugby and soccer are both superficially similar in terms of their energetic demands, they require different body types and thus different optimal types of training and nutrition. Rugby players need to be bigger (but rarely as large as the American footballer) than soccer players and their training, and thus nutrition, would reflect those differences.

The issues discussed above bring up a major problem in providing dietary recommendations for the mixed sports athlete: in comparison to pure endurance or pure strength/power sports, the mixed sport athlete will tend to have the most potentially varied requirements. This issue will be reflected at varying times throughout this book.

In many cases, I can provide only generalities with guidelines on how to make adjustments. But the specifics of what is optimal may vary quite a bit due to the exceeding variety of what the mixed sports category covers.

You can watch an excerpt from the seminar DVD below.


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