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Archive for October, 2009

the Olympic Challenge

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

People often ask me what I eat as an elite athlete.  It’s a really good question!  My answer has two parts.  On one hand, cross-country ski training burns a lot of calories, so there is some freedom to kind of eat whatever you want without immediate visual consequences.  On the other hand however, as an elite athlete my body is like a high-end race car engine.  The higher quality the fuel put in, the faster I can go.  So, it’s always a balance.  I try to eat smart and healthy to optimize my performance.  But I also like to reward myself for working hard with those indulgent (not-so-healthy) foods.

Lately, I’ve been feeling a little guilty about “rewarding” myself too much.  With the Olympics coming up (the ultimate motivation for being the best you can be), I have decided to give myself an “Olympic challenge.”  When I was a cross-country runner in high-school my team used to give up five things for the running season.  I actually carried this tradition into my preparation for the 2002 Olympics as well, giving up five things: candy, chips, french fries, soda and staying up late.

I am now attempting to commit to this challenge once again.  From now until the Olympics (Feb 12, 2010) I am going to give up:

1) Candy

2) Chips

3) French Fries

4) Soda (this one is going to be tough!)

5) White bread

Each of these things that I’m giving up represents one of the five rings in the Olympic symbol.  For some people this would probably be quite easy, because they would never eat this stuff anyway.  For me, it will be a good sacrifice to remember that I am committed to my goals.

Feel free to join the challenge with me.  Pick five things that you can go without for the next few months to remind yourself of how sweet it will be to reach your goal.

Keep an eye on me!  Good luck!