Unusual Sporting Diets

Here are five athletes who prove that not every sportsman follows the dietary routine you may expect for those at the elite level.

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Many athletes will tell you that they treat their bodies like a temple and watch the calories with every single piece of food they eat. Others meanwhile, stick to what they feel works for them….even if it’s food that the dieticians wouldn’t recommend!

Here is a list of five strange diets for stars that have gone to the very top of their sports.

Jamie Vardy

Over the last five seasons, the Leicester striker has bagged 104 Premier League goals, won the Premier League title and made 26 appearances for his country.

Not bad for a man who was playing non-league football in 2011, but Vardy has his own way of preparing for a match.

The former Fleetwood frontman would drink a can of Red Bull when he would wake up, if playing in a Saturday 3pm kick off.

Vardy admitted that he doesn’t have any breakfast and won’t eat anything until 11:30am, when he will have a cheese-and-ham omelette with baked beans.

The striker will wash that down with another Red Bull and then a third can of the energy drink an hour-and-a-half before kick-off.

Vardy’s routine starts the night before a game though. From 2015, the former England man would fill a plastic water bottle to halfway with port, which he says helps him “switch off and sleep a bit easier” ahead of the match.

Usain Bolt

For an athlete, it doesn’t get any better than eight Olympic gold medals and 11 world championship golds – something achieved by sprinter Bolt.

The Jamaican star still holds the 100m and 200m world records and dominated the sprint events for years, before finally retiring in 2017.

Back in 2013, Bolt revealed that the secret of his Olympic success was down to chicken nuggets!

The sprinter claims to eating approximately 100 nuggets a day from McDonalds during his time in Beijing at the 2008 Olympic Games. Journalists worked out that around 4,700 calories a day and 47,000 in total whilst staying in the Chinese capital.

Since retiring, Bolt says he’s changed his diet – swapping nuggets for a more balanced diet, including fresh vegtables.

Michael Phelps

The American swimmer is the most successful Olympian of all time and you would think that with his fitness and streamline figure, he would have watched everything he ate.

Phelps though ate a phenomenal 12,000 calories a day back in 2008 (Beijing Olympics) – which is six times the average intake of an adult.

The massive menu of food was a way to fuel his brutal training regime and it seemed to work, with the swimmer claiming eight gold medals at the Games.

A breakfast would see Phelps eat three fried-egg sandwiches, with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, fried onions and mayonnaise, one five-egg omelette, one bowl of grain, three slices of French toast and three pancakes.

Marshawn Lynch

Running-back Lynch has won a Super Bowl ring, has been a five-time Pro-Bowl player and is now a free agent, at the age of 34.

His strange diet came about via his mother, who used her son’s love of Skittles to get him charged up for matches.

The former Buffalo Bills, Oakland Raiders and Seattle Seahawks star was given the sweets before games, with his mum describing them as ‘power pellets’.

He then started to celebrate touchdowns by eating Skittles on the sidelines and is now a spokesperson for the sweet brand!

Rio Ferdinand

As well as pre-match eating routines, some sports stars have their quirky habits halfway through a fixture.

When at Manchester United, team-mates claim Rio Ferdinand used to snack on Jaffa Cakes to give him some more energy for the second half.

Most players would stick to a nutritional snack, but the former England defender felt the McVitie biscuit/cakes would help him produce a high-level second-half display.

It certainly didn’t do Ferdinand any harm, as he won 10 major titles during his time at Old Trafford.

Warren has been employed as a sport journalist for over two decades and as well as years of written experience, has also worked in other areas of the media including radio and television. Football has always been his number one passion, but has also commentated and written on a number of other sports including golf, cricket, tennis and rugby.
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