Some Olympic Athletes Eat A Lot Of Shitty Food

We often think of world-class athletes as outliers whose dedication to training is comprehensive, right down to whatever it is they put into their bodies. Not so for high-endurance athletes like distance runners, cyclists, or triathletes, according to what a researcher from the Mayo Clinic told The New York Times Magazine.

Dr. Michael Joyner said that because such athletes can burn anywhere from 4,000 to 6,000 calories during the peak of their most strenuous workouts, some full-on carb-loading by pigging out on crap must be done to make up the difference.

Gretchen Reynolds of the Times Magazine continues:

Refueling can resemble an episode of "Man v. Food," with dinner consisting of things like a pound of pasta drizzled with olive oil (about 800 calories), a dozen eggs (840 calories), an entire cheese pizza (perhaps 2,000 calories) and a pint of Ben & Jerry's cheesecake-brownie ice cream (1,000 calories). These foods (although not this exact lineup) were described to me by dietitians and officials who work with Olympians as common training-table choices for elite endurance athletes, particularly men. Plus beer (about 150 calories a bottle).

Large quantities of pizza? Ice cream? Beer? That settles it. My own quest for the 2016 Olympics begins tonight.

[New York Times Magazine]