Four different lifestyle factors are: smoking, alcohol, drugs
and diet. There are other factors that like activity levels, sleep or stress.
Alcohol – Affects
your sports performance very much. Because
alcohol is a diuretic, drinking too much of it can lead you to dehydration,
because the alcohol makes your kidney produce much more urine than usual.
Exercising after drinking alcohol can make dehydration even worse because you
sweat as your body temperature rises. You need to be hydrated when you exercise
to maintain the blood flow through your body, which is essential for
circulating/spreading oxygen and nutrients to your muscles. Drinking can
also increase the potential for unusual heart rhythms. This is a risk which increases
during exercise up to two days after heavy alcohol consumption. Other impacts of
alcohol such as cancer, heart disease and liver disease, could stop you taking
part in exercise and sport all combined.
Smoking – One of the
main impacts of smoking on athletic performance is a decrease in lung function.
For athletes, this means they decrease a stamina and performance, as muscles
that get inadequate/poor oxygen become fatigued more quickly. Smokers also
usually suffer from shortness of breath more often than non – smokers, because
their muscles and heart demand more oxygen than their lungs are able to supply.
This can cause athletes to make poor decisions, perform bad when exercising, or
even become faint or dizzy. Smoking can also reduce the strength of bones and forbid
the body’s ability to repair ligaments, tendons and skin. Another impact
smoking has on athletes is its effect on circulatory health. Smoking causes the
blood vessels to constrict and become blocked with plaque, it can also highly
increase blood pressure. Constricted blood vessels reduce blood flow to the
muscles, limiting the amount of oxygen the muscles receive. Loss of blood flow
can significantly reduce muscular endurance, while the heart itself may also
get tired more quickly.
Stress – When
talking about stress not all stress
is bad for your performance. Stress can affect your performance in different
ways. Stress can make you more alert, more motivated to exercise, and be more
competitive. In the right amount, stress helps you prepare, focus, and
perform as best as you can. But on the other hand, too much stress, or bad
stress, can cause performance anxiety, which hurts your health overall and does
not allow you to play relaxed, confident, and focused in competition.
Drugs – First off, all
drugs are addictive. You can get depressed from them. If you use any kind of
drug in sport, you’re not competing fairly. Drugs may lead to serious even
permanent health problems, kidney problems or even failure, liver damage, enlarged heart, high blood pressure, joint
pain and muscle weakness all of which increase the risk of stroke and heart attack.
Short term effects can be: increased acne, mood swings or fatigue.
Sleep – Sleep not
only helps your body to recover, but it also a boosts your performance level.
When talking about training intensity, athletes getting at least nine hours of
sleep at night are more likely to do higher intensity workouts such as weight
lifting, biking, or running. And also, sleep decreases stress, when you wake up
from good sleep you’ll also have a better performance. But sleep can also have
a bad side, if you won’t sleep enough you will be tired, without motivation and
it will decrease your physical activity levels. It also affects your
concentration and reaction, tired athlete is slower to react to things around
him, he will also be slower in the field or court. Fatigue affects the body’s
immune system, making players/athletes more vulnerable and can get ill any day.
And shorter sleep periods don’t provide the body with sufficient time to
regenerate cells and repair from the workouts, trainings or just daily
Diet – Good nutrition can help boost up your
athletic performance. An active lifestyle and exercise routine, along with
eating well, is the best way to stay healthy. Eating a good diet can help
provide the energy you need to finish a race, or just enjoy a casual sport or
activity. You are more likely to be tired and perform poorly during sports when
you do not get enough: calories, carbohydrates, fluids, iron, vitamins,
minerals and protein. Healthy food also helps to protect us from diseases like
heart attack, diabetes or cancer. From my point of view, I’ve been eating
healthy and I feel more energized, concentrated and more confident in