Free Golf Workouts, Nutrition Tips and Performance Psychology Secrets From The Renegade Golf Coach

What to Eat Before, During and After Golf

by Coach Stephen on

“For better or for worse, what you cram down your pie-hole will affect your golf game and your handicap.”

That’s a direct quote and the opening statement that I made to a group of golf instructors at a seminar last winter.

Some of the instructors were familiar with my work, and knew what to expect from me.

Others may have been taken aback by my bluntness, and vocabulary.

Still others laughed.

But this is no laughing matter.  At least not if your goal is peak performance on the course.

So let’s jump right in…

What To Eat Before A Round Of Golf

The goal of the Pre Round meal is to provide a slow and sufficient energy release that lasts for the next couple of hours as well as to provide great mental concentration.

Eat lightly in the two hours leading up to tee time. Food in your digestive system diverts blood away from your brain and muscles, affecting concentration and physical performance. A meal approximately 1 ½ to 2 hours prior to play is ideal.

Eat  high-quality complex carbohydrates, keep protein and fat intakes moderate since these slow down digestion.

Eat slowly and chew well.

Drink pure water to be adequately hydrated. Try one to two glasses prior to tee time.

Never drastically alter your normal eating patterns prior to competition. Favorite foods may often give you a psychological edge.

What To Eat During A Round Of Golf

The goal of the golf round meal is to maintain blood sugar levels and avoid dehydration.

Take a mix of dried fruit and nuts. Eat just small amounts throughout the round to keep energy and concentration levels regulated.

Sip water regularly, especially on hot days where you sweat more.

Organic nutrition bars readily available from health food stores are a convenient snack that can help keep blood sugar levels steady. Avoid the high glycemic varieties and those with a list of ingredients you can’t pronounce. Try small mouthfuls at regular intervals, before you get hungry.

What To Eat After A Round Of Golf

The goal of the Post Round Meal is to replenish any lost nutrients as well as to continue sustaining energy levels and continual hydration.

Consume a combination of protein and carbohydrate-rich foods and drinks as soon as possible after your round to replenish glycogen stores.

Replace fluids that have been lost. For every pound that is lost, drink 2 cups of fluids.

Replace potassium or sodium that has been lost during competition or training by using foods. Fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of potassium.

Replace sodium by eating foods with sea salt, NOT that gross table salt.

This has been an overview of the kinds of foods to eat for golf peak performace.  I will be covering several elements in more detail in upcoming posts.

In the meantime, tell me what some of your favorite golf foods are (for better or worse) in the comments section below.

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Tony Lee February 23, 2012 at

What is something light that I can eat? I would think a great thing to eat before a round would be a piece of toast. I would consider that as a light food product, and it wouldn`t have to much of an effect on your gameplay or your stomach. I hate it when my stomach is hurting when I am trying to enjoy myself on the course. Thank you for the great tips by the way!

Coach Stephen February 27, 2012 at

We generally recommend pre-match foods that are a combination of carbs, protein and fats. Just having toast may work for you, but for many golfers this would result in less than stable blood sugar levels. Often this shows as loss of concentration or fatigue. You should always test these things out during a non-match situation and pay close attention to how you feel. Many of our golfers are shocked at how much of a difference their food can make on their performance.

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