Ski Nutrition for Beginners

By Adam Galuszka
November 7, 2013

“Well, I’ve never skied before” is not something you hear too often here in Boulder, Colorado. I can’t tell you how many times I told people that only to see a shocked look on all their faces. I’m actually from the South, where it snows pretty much never, and when by happenstance it does, there are no hills to ski.

Well yesterday, I went skiing. You may ask, “who the heck goes skiing on a tuesday?”  Working for a progressive company like The Feed gives me plenty of time to pursue my goals and, in the process, do some product testing. Yesterday was actually my 3rd time skiing, which pretty much makes me an expert… on falling down at least. What I’ve done over these past two weeks of learning is taken my nutritional expertise and applied it to a sport I have never done before. So here’s what I’ve come up with in terms of ski nutrition for beginners:

photo 3

First off, you NEED to eat and drink just like any other sport. If you ski 4-5 hours with lousy nutrition, you’ll probably find yourself tumbling down a mountain wondering “What am I doing here?”  I’ve tried a lot of different products while skiing already, which usually requires stuffing my pockets full of way too much food, and seeing how they handle the temperatures and how they taste in the cold.

Thicker items such as Clif Bars, Pro Bars, Kind Bars, Mojo Bars and Rip Van Wafels (bummer, I know) don’t do so well in the cold, making them hard to chew during the quick break on the chairlift.  Some things that I’ve found to work really well while skiing are Epic Bars, Z Bars, Honey Bunchies, Bonk Breakers and almost all chews.  I try to eat something every hour to hour and a half to make sure I’m well fueled for crushing the bunny slopes.


(Tally Latcham eats Epic Bars while skiing)

Hydration becomes a little more challenging while on the mountain.  Chances are you’re not skiing with a Camelbak and where the heck are you supposed to put a water bottle anyways?  Even though you may not be sweating, you are still getting super dehydrated from the cold and the physical effort.  I knew this was going to be an issue before I started, so I stuff Skratch Labs single serves in my jacket to use during water stops.  They take up little space and ensure you make the most out of hydration breaks while out skiing.  Most ski areas should have a couple places to get a cup of water while on the slopes.  I drank two 8 oz cups per stop, with half a single serve packet in each.  I tried to stop once an hour, giving me a break from the cold and hydrating me for the rest of the day.


(example of good hydration practices)

Every time I’ve skied I’ve finished feeling good and energized, which I believe is very important, mentally and physically. All the products I’ve taken with me have been packable and fit well into my jacket pockets. I chose bars over regular food items, like sandwiches or bananas, because falling is an all-too-common thing when learning to ski and it’d be pretty sad to have to eat a crushed PB&J. Hopefully I’ve given you some valuable information for your first or next time out on the slopes, and as always email me with any questions you may have.

Happy Skiing!