Dance fuel: what’s on your plate?

…GET IN MY BELLY.

The weirdest thing happened to me this week: everything I ate and drank tasted like salt.

At first I thought someone was punking me. Then I thought something might be wrong with my tap water. Finally, I wrote it off as stress, or maybe dehydration, and vowed to just power down more (sea)water and try to mellow out more.

It sucked because I’ve been HUNGRY, but everything I put in my mouth made me feel sick. I threw out so much food! So sad.
And the most annoying part of all of this, of course, has been keeping my energy up for practice and classes when everything tastes… wrong.

The quick fix for me turned out to be peanut butter-banana smoothies (sucking those calories down with a straw like a soldier!), so thank god for blenders. But I’ve been missing my normal dance foods, hard.

Thankfully, I figured out what’s wrong, and it’s soooooo silly: my new mouthwash! Apparently this particular brand has had tons of complaints about messing with peoples’ taste buds, some for weeks at a time. So I’m off the stuff, and things are slowly starting to taste normal again.

Best part: getting back my favorite “dance fuel”! Oh whole grain bagel with peanut butter, how I have missed you! You too, peppers-and-eggs with toast (and way too much ketchup).

I’m not a nutritionist or anything, but I have done some trial and error with pre-dance foods, and I’ve discovered that my favorite pre-class meals have something in common: a mix of fat/protein/grains.

A bagel and jelly or butter alone, for instance, tastes great, and gears you up for like an hour. But… that’s basically my commute to the studio! When my stomach is growling two classes later, shit is not poppin anymore.

Thus, as cute as you want to look in your tiny pole clothes, you can’t skimp on small servings of fat and protein with your carbs if you’re going to really dance. They’ll carry you through practice long after that sugar has burned off.

The key is to keep it all in moderation (you don’t want to be sweating bacon grease or anything….ew). Also important: make sure your portions stay on the medium side, and finish them up two hours before you get moving. That should help stave off any tummy woes.

Finally: WATER. Omg, so important. It’s easy to forget how hard you’re working in a dance class because you’re having fun, but you need to be hydrating before, during, and after. It will help you digest your food better, avoid cramps, and NOT PASS OUT. In the summer months especially, that’s a risk, so take it seriously!

I’m sort of bad with this because I loooooove coffee, but I make sure to put extra ice in there if I’m drinking it cold–and to refill my bottle with water as soon as I hit the studio.

So what are your favorite dance foods? Any tips or tricks to keep your energy up?

Classes tomorrow–check the schedule!

Happy twirls,

Cathy

1 Comment

  1. Nice post!! i used to think its ok to not eat before pole, then realised how impt it was after i always get mad tired halfway during class. cereals, brocolli&potato salad are my faves before class! 😀

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