I had an interesting post in the works on the physiological differences between bodybuilder training (like Body Beast) and our other stuff (P90X et al) but don’t have time to do it justice so you’re getting a quick news hit instead. Newhope 360, a trade publication on natural products, presented this slide show on what Olympic athletes eat.
It’s mainly eye candy, as slide shows tend to be, but highlights a few trends that athletes seems to share with the rest of us. Kids tend to eat like crap—-Ryan Lochte lived on McDonald’s in Beijing—-and those who have long careers tend to clean up their act. And while not addressed in the slide show, professional athletes seem to follow similar patterns. “You be surprised how bad a lot of the guys we work with eat when they get here,” said Dr. Marcus Elliott, owner of P3, an elite athlete training facility and head of Beachbody’s scientific advisory board. “The ones who stick it out tend improve their diet a lot. We help but, really, the level of training we demand helps to dictate it too.”
Beach volleyball’s Misty May-Treanor’s power food is Greek yogurt and honey, and pal Kerri Walsh Jennings describes her food philosophy as “the greener the better.” The two won their third consecutive Olympic gold medal yesterday during their final match together.
Overall it’s probably not too shocking. Athletes, especially young ones, burn a ginormous number of calories (Michael Phelps’ 12,000 cal/days makes the list) and can pretty much eat all they want when their training volume is high. You can’t eat enough to replenish spending six hours above your anaerobic threshold no matter how old you are. But it is nice to see their human side. Even Phelps has had to cut back at the ripe old of age of 24 to “a three-egg omelet and three pieces of French toast and coffee this morning.” Aging is such a bitch.
Anyway, bottom line here is that the common theme sounds exactly like what we’ve been preaching forever. As ABC news reported, the now gold medal wearing Lochte has a new recipe for success.
“He stopped eating fast food, and adopted foods like lean protein, whole grains and healthy fats. A typical recovery meal includes grilled chicken, whole grain spaghetti and a green salad with lemon juice and olive oil,” a meal like very familiar to anyone who owns a Beachbody program. Congrats kids, you all eat like Olympians!
Tomorrow Newhope 360 is covering Olympian supplement regimens. This promises to be more revealing. I’ll report on it should that hold true.