Is it true that an athlete can eat whatever they want?

sports nutrition nyc athlete foodIn my nutrition practice, I wear two hats. Almost 50% of my clients are athletes looking for sports nutrition, while the other half are a mix of weight loss, disease management such as cholesterol, diabetes and eating disorders, and those clients who want to “redistribute the trunk region” and lean out.

In this blog, I’d like to highlight the difference between sports nutrition for athletes in training, and the 45 minute athlete. My 45 minute athletes are under the misconception that they can eat whatever they want because that’s the best part about being an athlete. And they get frustrated when they cannot get an athletic build similar to that of their athlete friend (who happens to train 1.5-2 hours daily for triathlons). The frustrating reality is that you will typically burn only about 200 calories doing a 2 mile run. And you can put that 200 right back in by eating 2 TBSP of mayo. But here is the other frustrating reality: those athletes who appear to be eating “whatever they want”, are far more regimented than they lead you to believe. True, they need more calories, but they will not be getting those calories from mayo or other “inefficient”foods. They are fueling their bodies with just the right proportions of protein, carbs, and fat. There is no such thing as a free pass to eat whatever crap you want – this has repercussions for both the 45 min athlete and the full time athlete. The difference is that the athlete’s diet is planned, and leaves room for the occasional crap meal. And this is the great news: as a 45 minute athlete you can plan for this too! It will be your unique plan to suit your activity and your needs. If you want to call yourself an athlete, you have to act like an athlete and embrace the challenge fully. Not just one stand alone part of it, and expect results. Everything is connected. Believe me – if my athlete clients are eating like crap, they are NOT performing their best, and their condition is not where they want to be at.

This is the best part of working with a nutritionist. We do all the planning for you to give you the tools necessary to execute on the body that you’ve always wanted!!

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