Many people are great at managing their business, but when asked about their food management skills…silence! Working with the German national football team, I know that the best output requires the best input. Athletes use food to fine-tune the performance of their body and brain. Here’s how you can do the same in the office. ”If you want a job done well, you must first create the right conditions for it,” said adidas founder Adi Dassler. The athletes I work with know that training and talent must be matched with the right diet to be successful. Hence, it is important to plan your food over the day – no matter if you are doing sports or planning your meetings – in order to perform at your best throughout the day:
A happy and healthy start to the day
A healthy breakfast boosts your day with pure energy: complex carbohydrates, which are contained in wholewheat bread or wholegrain cereals, are the perfect assistant to keep your energy level up over the day. Add a banana, cashew nuts or soy beans which stimulate your happy hormones and some fresh spices and herbs to activate your metabolism. You will be in full swing in just a few minutes.
Surviving a meeting marathon
Stamina is not only a prerequisite for running a marathon; it is also needed to complete the meeting marathon at work, so having the right lunch is essential: Unlike in endurance sports where a lot of carbohydrates are beneficial, focus on starch-free carbohydrates during the day, such as vegetables, a small protein side dish and again a lot of fresh spices and herbs such as chilli, ginger, vanilla, basil, etc.
Generally speaking, it is better to eat vegetables rather than pasta which makes you sleepy instead of keeping you awake during the afternoon.
Little snacks with big effects
The little snacks in-between want to be managed, too. When your body becomes hypoglycemic and that ravenous feeling takes over, it is already too late. You just can’t help it when your body starts craving for the unhealthy stuff in the vending machines. To avoid this, I recommend eating some nuts, a hard-boiled egg, tinned mackerel or some dry fruit and drinking a lot of water during the day which helps you keep your level of blood sugar at a constant level. This way you will not get the ravenoushunger.
No more fridge assaults
Don’t forget about your after-work diet management. This is the only effective means to avoid raiding your fridge when you get home and just eating anything you find with a “best before” date that is still good.
Fill your fridge and dry storage with hard-boiled eggs, carrots, deep-frozen vegetables, fish and berries, low-fat cheese and rye crispbread. These groceries stay fresh for a long time, don’t weigh on your stomach and are way better than the pizza service or chips.
In the end, we are all creatures of habit. So once you get used to managing your diet throughout the day and have fully adapted it to your individual needs, you will find that it is actually quite easy to increase your performance just by eating.