How to eat like an Olympic athlete
In the run-up to the Rio Olympics 2016, we asked four British champions to share the easy, nutritious recipes that help them to stay on top form.
If you're serious about sport, you need some seriously nutritious fuel. We asked four Olympic athletes what they eat to keep themselves in top shape...
Hannah's protein-packed lunch
Hannah England is one of only three British women to have run 800m in under two minutes, and 3000m in under nine minutes. She competed at the 2012 Olympics."I usually train twice a day so getting enough quality food to fuel my sessions is really important. I don't respond well to gluten, so I plan meals ahead – it's not always easy to grab food on the go. I run for 30-40 minutes before breakfast, then have porridge with peanut butter, fruit and a smoothie. Lunch is often a quinoa salad. I snack on rice pudding and have coffee to set me up for my next training stint at around 4pm. "For my evening meal I usually have a baked sweet potato, a roasted chicken breast with root vegetables, and a side of something green like broccoli or asparagus. The time of year dictates what I eat for pudding. As I gear up for race season, I'm a bit healthier and go for yogurt, fruit or hot chocolate."
If you're looking for a protein boost, give Hannah's tuna, avocado & quinoa salad a try.
Rower Will Satch won gold in the men's eight for Team GB at the Rio Olympics in 2016. He was a bronze medallist in the coxless pairs at the 2012 Olympics in London and has also won three successive world championships with the men's eight team. "I start training at 7.30am every day, so I begin with something easy to eat – a blended fruit shake. My second breakfast, after training, is either high-carb or protein-based, or both, depending on the exercise I've done. "After another intense session on the water or rowing machine, lunch needs to be easy to digest and high-energy as I normally do at least one more session during the day, so I have a mix of slow and quick-release carbs, essential minerals and vitamins from veg and chicken. These meals are provided by our great on-site chef, Omar, who makes sure that we eat the 6000-plus calories we need every day.
"For supper, I eat salad with fish or steak. Dessert will be natural yogurt with honey, seeds and fruit, and a peppermint tea."
Try out Will's tasty super smoothie.
Jazmin's low-sugar snack
Jazmin 'Jazz' Carlin became a two-time silver medallist in the women's 400m and 800m freestyle at the Rio Olympics in 2016. The Welsh swimmer, who trains at the national training centre in Bath, also won gold at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow."I have to get up at 6:30am. It's hard to eat a big breakfast so early, so I have an apple and a cereal bar before training. I then have porridge with honey or fresh fruit, and a yogurt. "Lunch will vary, but I aim to get a balance of protein and carbs. I'm always hungry at the end of my training days, so I like to have a big dinner. One of my favourite recipes is a home-style chicken curry from BBC Good Food, made with plenty of ginger and lots of spices, which I serve with rice.
"I snack on lots of fresh fruit and make healthy bites for the week, like my dark chocolate & banana muffins which are free from refined flours or sugar."
Get your low-sugar snacking fix with this dark choc, banana & rye loaf.
Bianca's refuelling dinner
Taekwondo fighter Bianca Walkden, from Liverpool, battled her way to a bronze at the Rio Olympics in 2016. She won gold at the 2015 World Championships – only the second British woman to do so.
"I normally train three times a day – Taekwondo in the morning and afternoon. I have two boiled eggs and wholemeal toast for breakfast, and a large protein shake after my morning taekwondo. Lunch might be pasta with chicken, tomatoes and Parmesan. During the day, I snack on fruit – usually a banana or an apple. For dinner I make sure I get plenty of protein. My favourite meals are steak or spaghetti Bolognese. My family are Italian, so they taught me how to make it at a young age."
This classic spaghetti Bolognese recipe is rich in iron and folate to help you refuel.
What are your favourite healthy, energy-packed snacks and dinners? Let us know in the comments below...