When you were young, you were probably cautioned to wait an hour before going swimming. Stomach cramps are no fun, whether you’re swimming or paddling out with your surfboard to catch the next big wave. But what if you’re an Olympic swimmer who needs to train for hours every day in the pool? You’re burning up tons of energy, but eating large meals can be a little tricky. Some Olympic swimmers need more than 6,000 calories per day just to maintain their body weight. Consuming plenty of fluids is equally important; even if you don’t notice it in the pool, you’re still sweating. If the London Olympics inspire you to start hardcore training in the pool, try eating smaller meals more frequently. Ideally, an Olympic swimmer’s diet should be about 60% to 70% carbs, 20% to 25% protein, and the rest from healthy fats. Remember that the carbs should also come from veggies and fruits, not just grains.
Bananas (Ryan Lochte usually has a couple of these daily the potassium helps his muscles recover)
Peanut Butter Sandwich (Another favorite of Ryan Lochte if you’re not a professional athlete, try reduced-calorie and reduced-sugar peanut butter instead)
Grits (Michael Phelps eats this high-carb food, which provides fiber and protein)
Chocolate Milk (Missy Franklin drinks this after workouts to help her muscles recovery)
Eggs (Natalie Coughlin maintains her own chicken coop for fresh eggs; her chickens are named after the characters in “True Blood”)
Salad Greens (Natalie Coughlin is also highly invested in her large garden, and prefers to eat what she grows)
Protein Bars (Peter Vanderkaay eats energy bars before workouts and drinks lots of sports drinks too much sugar for the average person)