Everyone is amazed to hear that anyone could possibly consume 12,000 calories each day, but Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps’ diet includes lots of food when he is training. Phelps trains six days a week and exercises five hours a day, so he is using up the calories that he consumes. He revealed his typical daily diet during an interview that amazed everyone to hear that his breakfast alone includes three fried egg sandwiches with a lot of cheese, lettuce, tomato, fried onions, and mayonnaise. That is only the beginning though. He also drinks two cups of coffee, and eats a five egg omelet, one bowl of grits, which are a maize porridge, three slices of French toast with powdered sugar, and three chocolate chip pancakes.
Most people eat that much in two days, but Michael Phelps’ diet must give him the energy he needs. For lunch, he then has one pound of pasta with tomato sauce, two large ham and cheese sandwiches with mayonnaise on white bread, plus energy drinks that equal around 1,000 calories. Dinner includes another pound of pasta with sauce, a whole pizza of six or eight slices, and more energy drinks. Even cyclists in the Tour de France only consume around 8,000 to 10,000 calories per day when they are competing.
Health professionals, such as sports trainers, nutritionists, physicians, and others say that Phelps can probably eat whatever he wants to eat. This is because his metabolism is so fast that he burns calories much faster than the average man of his age. His extreme training has forced his metabolism to speed up so that he can accommodate this many calories without becoming chubby or overweight. Just by looking at his perfect body, it is easy to tell that he is not overeating. Professionals add that Michael Phelps diet consists of the calories he needs for energy to give his muscles fuel and to recover and repair the muscles. He has around eight percent fat in his body, and if he does not consume enough carbohydrates during a competition, Phelps could reach the stage when the body is out of carbohydrate fuel or muscle glycogen and it needs to begin to burn fat. It is more difficult for the body to burn fat than to use available carbohydrates, and if the body has to do this it puts more stress on the body than just using available carbohydrate energy.
Nutritionists and dietitians do add that Phelps would do better by substituting whole wheat bread for his white bread on his egg sandwiches. They say that he should also eat more fruits and vegetables. Others say that smaller meals plus snacks would be better for him as they would provide a more steady stream of carbohydrates. One problem for an athlete like Phelps is requiring so much energy from a lot of food, but not feeling stuffed from eating so much. If an athlete is too full, that is a factor that could slow him down. Also, it takes time to eat 12,000 calories each day. That is why a great deal of his calories are provided by energy drinks. Although Phelps will not reveal which one he drinks, there are a few that have around 1,000 calories per drink, which would help get him up to his caloric intake requirements. These energy drinks may also have fats in them to boost their calorie count, and fats have two and one-half times the calories than carbohydrates or proteins.
Michael Phelps diet must be perfect for him, because his swimming record and many gold medals prove that he is in perfect physical shape. Not many people swim 50 miles per week like he does.