Layne Glaus is a high school Boys Basketball Coach, an Athletic Trainer, and a Nutritionist. He is a former standout college basketball player and shares his passion for the game through coaching his Park County High School Rangers. However, he has found his passion for nutrition to be another vehicle to impact student-athletes and steer them towards a healthy lifestyle.
“We talk to our guys about whether they are adding energy to the team or taking it away. Your diet plays such an important role in athletics and seems to be neglected more than any other facet of the game.”
Midwest Elite Basketball: Hi, Layne. Appreciate you taking the time to talk with us.
Layne Glaus: Thanks for the opportunity to be on the newsletter. I’m very passionate about the field of nutrition and overall wellness and am excited to share some of the benefits.
MEB: Currently, you are the Head Boys Basketball Coach and Athletic Trainer at Park County High School in Livingston, MT In addition, you are on the verge of launching your own nutrition consultation company. Tell us more about this venture?
LG: I plan to integrate nutrition, sports medicine, and personal training into one. I will be catering to the active community as well as anyone looking to jump start a healthy lifestyle and the benefits that follow. It is my belief that all three fields are very beneficial, but offer synergistic benefits when collectively taken into account. The individualization of diet, exercise, and injury prevention/treatment without a disconnect among practitioners.
MEB: Through your position as a coach and an Athletic Trainer how do you currently educate athletes about nutrition?
LG: We focus on Sports Nutrition and its importance in recovery and performance. The lack of consistent education in the field of Nutrition can leave the guys in the dark on what to eat. It’s a mentality that how you take care of yourself plays a key role in your success as a player and more importantly your team. Hopefully, another lesson they can take with them after high school to ensure a long healthy life.
MEB: How important is nutrition to performance in regards to athletes?
LG: Vital. It is the building blocks for all the the energy exerted on the court. Same for recovery. We talk to our guys about whether they are adding energy to the team or taking it away. Your diet plays such an important role in athletics and seems to be neglected more than any other facet of the game.
MEB: Personally, how do you approach educating athletes about the importance of proper nutrition?
LG: Trying to eat the right way myself. If I’m a coach that consistently shows up to the gym with fast food or opts for junk food on the road, the kids will see right through you. The focus of Nutrition at the pro and collegiate levels has caught more attention in recent years. It’s always nice to have examples on how to take care of yourself from the elite level athletes in your field.
MEB: Give us an example.
LG: The top athletes in the world get above 10 hours of sleep per night (Lebron James, Roger Federer).
MEB: Name some obstacles young student-athletes face when trying to obtain balanced nutrition?
LG: Time management seems to either benefit or take away from our student-athletes. Eating right takes time and effort. You need to plan ahead. The stigma that healthy food is too expensive is another big set back. Consistent education can help shift their mindset away from the “I want it now” mentality. Once they see results with options that tout nutritional value, they will be hooked. It’s difficult to get them to that point but well worth the effort.
MEB: What advice do you have for coaches trying to implement healthy nutritional habits to their teams?
LG: Explain the Why behind what you’re implementing. The initial inclination of every play is how can this benefit me. If you can catch their interest and follow that up with competency that speaks their language you will make a difference. I feel fortunate to have a passion for nutrition, but understand that not every coach is wired the same way. Find an expert in the field to come speak with your team and integrate the take away points as a consistent part of your routine.
Do your homework, and take the team shopping while on the road. Set a certain budget and some guidelines to support nutrition. If the meal is presented as a challenge they can invest some effort into the meal. Inexpensive, healthy, and something everyone can enjoy.
MEB: As Fall approaches so does pre-season workouts and conditioning. Obviously, nutrition should be focused on year around. However, what should coaches and athletes focus on as the demands of the pre-season increase?
LG: First, you need to make sure your athletes are hydrated. Before, during, and after. If you can get your athletes to drink fluids consistently throughout the day, they will have more energy. The practical point to get across. Make sure your urine is a very light yellow. What you eat before and after a workout will play a major role in the efficiency and gain from a workout. Eat a well balanced meal 3-4 hours before the workout and carbohydrates leading up to the workout.) 25 grams of protein and 35 grams of carbohydrates within an hour after the workout. Focus on real food (animal meat, beans, rice, fruit, vegetables. Sleep is another key factor. Sleep is the time for your body to absorb your training while preparing for the next effort.
MEB: You keep mentioning the importance of sleep. Is proper rest just as important as proper nutrition?
LG: It is just as important as diet and exercise. Sleep effects focus, mood, and overall energy. Three areas that are stressed by every coach. Educating your players on the why, when it comes to sleep can make all the difference. How can you relate their sleep to the spot on the team they are striving towards? How can you relate sleep your teams goals throughout the season?
MEB: Lack of sleep will surely affect performance. How does a deficiency of rest decrease performance?
LG: The sleep deprived athlete becomes the the selfish athlete by nature of self preservation. If their tank is low, there not going to spill over into helping their teammates.
MEB: Describe the ideal hours of sleep, sleep patterns, and other measures of rest for a student-athlete.
LG: As I said, the elite athletes strive for 10-12 hours. The closer you get to the 10-12 range the more you increase the benefits. Sleep should be made a priority at night and you should seek out possible times to add an hour here or there. This will have a cumulative effect on your body throughout the season. Drop the devices after 9 or 10 pm. A smart phone, lap top, TV, or iPad can steal hours from your cumulative sleep bank.
MEB: Going back to your new business venture, we see nutritionists and sleep experts starting to find full-time positions with professional teams. What does the future of this field look like? Will there be a trickle down effect to college programs or even to youth basketball?
LG: The programs dedicated to success will come to understand that the daily effort invested into nutrition, rest, and preparatory training will give them the edge. As knowledge of these grow, so will their field. The top college programs in the nation already hire a sports nutritionist to their staff. The high school and grass roots programs are such a valuable tool to educate athletes on how to take care of themselves. I do see a shift towards health and wellness and think this will continue for good reason.
MEB: Thanks for your insight Layne. Look forward to seeing your business and positive influence grow!
LG: Grateful for the opportunity. After having the chance to work with your program, I feel fortunate for the opportunity to be a part of your newsletter. You can tell MEB is dedicated to serving athletes and coaches!