Athletes follow strict diets

A look into the diets athletes follow in-season

By Amy Clark
Staff Reporter

If you’ve ever participated or wanted to participate in a sport, you may have to go on a diet or at least change some of the things you eat, drink or do. Not all diets are necessarily designed to cause weight loss.

With some sports, like swimming, athletes may need to gain weight in order to have enough energy to participate. Boys swim coach Bill Kovacs, explained why this is.

“Swimming requires massive amounts of energy. Some swimmers can burn up to five thousand calories a day, depending on the intensity of the workout,” Kovacs said.

When someone hears they have to go on a diet, this could be taken the wrong way. Overall, these diets are made to improve skill level and performance.

“If they don’t eat enough, they won’t have the energy they need. The right combination of foods can boost your energy levels and keep them higher for longer, but also helps your immune system,” Kovacs said.

For some sports, athletes may be required to do other things for a diet. Kovacs explained what the swimmers have to cut out for their diets.

“I tell swimmers to avoid fried foods and too much sugar. A coach I know said, ‘If it grows in the ground, walks on the Earth, flies over the Earth or swims in the water, you can eat it.’ This sounds good to me,” Kovacs said.

Sophomore Ethan Meyers plays offensive and defensive lineman for the WCHS football team. Meyers explained the changes the football players have to make to their diets.

“During the season, I usually carry around a water bottle and fill it up after every period. This diet improves your performance by two to three percent and can actually make a difference in the fourth quarter when you are down by a touchdown and anything could help,” Meyers said.

Wrestlers may be required to cut weight in order to remain in their weight class.

Sophomore Brayley Starr explained his view of the diet the wrestlers participate in.

“I always eat healthy foods and drink lots of water and try not to eat out as much as possible. I believe that staying hydrated and eating good fresh foods improves your performance and energy and what you put in your body changes what performance you have. People say wrestling is bad or unhealthy because sometimes people must drop weight but really if you are smart and eat good foods but work hard in practice and track your calorie intake there is no way you will starve yourself,” Starr said.

In general, athletes will have to change some of the things they do during the season in which they play.

Whether the diet you go on makes you gain or lose weight, make sure you are staying healthy and the diets aren’t dangerous to your body.

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