The first aspect of nutrition is periodization. It is very difficult to be in a strict diet in training year round. Personally, I have to have times where I “loosen the belt” and enjoy a good cheeseburger. So, understand that just as there is periodization in your training, there is periodization in your nutrition. For example, when you are narrowing in on race day you may become very strict in your diet about 8-12 weeks before race day. This gives you ample time to lose any extra weight you are carrying and to maximize your training days with quality foods. After the race,
you may take a reward week to eat some extra food or enjoy a meal that just is not in your strict training diet. You shouldn’t feel bad about this cheat period and go enjoy a great desert. Once this cheat week or cheat day is over jump right back into your more strict diet to prepare for your next race. In the offseason, it is important to enjoy some not so strict foods, but be careful you can put on too much weight in the offseason. Watch video in link below
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Each athlete is vastly different in terms of what they eat during training. Some of the base components of a good diet are quality carbohydrates (No McDonald’s), quality proteins such as fish, chicken, and lean meats, fruits (often overlooked) and vegetables. Some triathletes become so neurotic about these different aspects that they measure everything. As someone who is very busy this is difficult to do, however, once you find a pattern of good eating
you will be able to implement a good diet for training. Do not go on a “diet” in that you minimize your calories so far that your training sessions end in weakness or “bonking.” Eat 6-7 times a day with quality snacks such as fruit, low-fat cheese sticks, or protein bars. Make sure to drink ample amounts of water as your training will require extra amounts of water to avoid dehydration. Finally, pick one nutritional pattern and stick with it instead of trying so many different fads.