What do Olympic Athletes eat? How do they stay in top physical condition? How is their diet changed in order to provide enough energy and strength for the intense nature of their sport?
Athletes diets are so different from the average person in that they require a lot more calories because of the amount of calories burned during exercise and competitions. Where an average person would require and eat only 2,000 calories or a little more a day, an athelete can sometimes consume up to 10,000 calories a day depending on the intensity and level of the sport! Key components of their diet must include CARBOHYDRATES and PROTIEN… (along with all of the the food groups) but these two are a must have. As an “ex” D1 athelete I can understand the ins and outs of what a serious athlete needs to keep the body going and excelling at the rate its being pushed. Going from 5am spinning class, straight to workouts with just enough time to stop by “The Landing” where they had everything from chocolate milk to protein and meal supplement shakes, to apples, bananas, and dried fruit and nuts. You could even make your own protein smoothie. Having access to that was imperative to keeping my body going the rest of the day of classes and on to practice that evening.
Carbohydrates are the bodys energy! Friuts, breads, rice, and many cereals are all good sources of carbs. These are all broken down in the body to glucose to provide us with energy. What most atheletes gear toward are the more complex carbohydrates like the fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. With carbohydrates in sufficient amount in the body the athelete is able to “go all out” for longer before they exhaust themselves. Also, with a diet high in carbohaydrates, if not all of the carbs are used up they are stored in the body in the form of glycogen for later use and break down into energy.
Proteins are the muscles major resource for building and rebuilding! Proteins consists of one or more polypeptide chains, and polypeptides are are linear chains of amino acids. Proteins play a part in alot of cell activity, some being broken down into essential amino acids and others into glucose for energy. Protein is very vital in METABOLISM and also with fibrous proteins actin and myosin in the MUSCLE to provide shape and motility! Key for an athlete who has rigorous workouts and practices.
All other components of the diet such as dairy, fats, oils, and fruits are also important to keep a balanced and healthy lifestyle not just for an athelete but for everyone!
“Spectacular achievements are always preceded by unspectacular preparation.”
Comments and questions or ideas?