Shaklee Pure Performance Team athlete Caryn Davies says she feels a little like a hobbit, known for eating seven meals a day: “First breakfast, second breakfast, elevensies, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, and supper.”
But that’s where the similarities end; this three-time Games medalist in Rowing (2004 silver, 2008 gold, 2012 gold) is back in the Women’s Eight boat and charging hard to the Tokyo Games. Multiple times a day she folds her 6’ 3” frame into the sliding saddle of the boat, melds with the oar handles and her eight teammates, and then slices through the water with breathtaking power and efficiency. “I burn 4,500 calories a day,” said Caryn, “so it’s actually a struggle to keep weight on!”
How do you eat like Bilbo Baggins but still function with the effectiveness of an elite athlete? Let’s turn to our Shaklee heroes for a glimpse into their nutrition habits that just might work for us too. Caryn, Amy Magaña (Diving), Ben Goodrich (Judo), Chloè Dygert (Cycling), and Valerie Arioto (Softball) each responded to several questions about their fueling habits:
1) As an elite athlete, what do you typically eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks?
- Amy: I typically eat three meals and three snacks every day: Breakfast: two eggs, three pieces of bacon, and oatmeal with blueberries. Snack 1: A smoothie with Performance® Advanced Physique® 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein, banana, water, strawberries, and peanut butter. Lunch: A gluten-free wrap with deli meat, mayo, and spicy mustard with raw veggies and hummus. Snack 2: A concentrated source of protein. Snack 3: Pork rinds and trail mix. Dinner: Lean protein with brown rice and steamed veggies.
- Ben: Breakfast is my most consistent meal of the day. I always have 4–6 oz. of egg whites with chicken and pepper jack cheese, spinach, and chili peppers. I often eat it with toast or hash browns.
- Chloè: For breakfast, I normally eat some sort of overnight oats with almond milk. Lunch varies day-to-day, but I honestly could eat the same thing every day for lunch and dinner and never tire of it. Some sort of rice and a protein, and I love tofu. I eat a lot of tofu and I’m not even vegetarian. Snacks—whew, I eat everything!
- Valerie: I have been a pescatarian (I don’t eat meat) for about five years. It’s not for everyone, but I have felt such an increase in energy and overall improvement in my health. I have always said the day my body tells me I need meat is when I will go back to it, but thus far I remain a pescatarian. Besides my love for fish, I eat veggies with every meal and sometimes stick to vegetarian or vegan meals. I always get the fueling I need with Shaklee products and nutrition-packed food.
2) What are your foods or nutrition or fueling patterns tailored for your sport?
- Amy: For diving, I need explosive energy as well as long-lasting energy to give me power and endurance during my long training sessions. I maintain a fueling pattern that utilizes an ideal balance between carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, which gives me the energy I need to perform my best and improve at each training session.
- Ben: I try to make sure I am fueling myself properly between practices while at work. This is when I usually take my Life-Strip® and drink one of the great Advanced Physique Whey Protein shakes.
- Caryn: We usually do a longer rowing session in the morning, which means I have to be sure to eat a good first breakfast before I row; otherwise I’d crash mid-workout. I also bring snacks in the boat with me, and I always have a Shaklee 180® Snack Bar in my gym bag for emergencies.
3) What Shaklee products or supplements do you include in your nutrition?
- Amy: My absolute favorite Shaklee product is the Advanced Physique Whey Protein. This product is delicious, convenient, and allows me to get enough protein in my diet. Also, it has an amazing amino acid profile, which makes it a very high-quality product.
- Caryn: The Rowing Team did some blood work recently, and I discovered I’m low in iron. Iron is an important building block for hemoglobin, which carries oxygen to the muscles via red blood cells. I’m using the Iron Plus C Complex to boost my iron. The vitamin C helps my body absorb the iron, but it’s also helpful for my immune system, and that’s especially important right now!
- Valerie: I rely on Shaklee Vitalizer™ for Women. And I take Performance™ Energy Chews to offset the inconsistencies in my schedule.
4) If you ever need to manage your weight, how do you adjust your diet or fueling?
- Amy: If I need to manage my weight, I adjust my diet by eliminating as many processed foods as possible and by focusing more on eating whole foods like fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
- Ben: If I need to manage my weight in a particularly short stint of time, I try to cut back on the intake of carbs and focus on just vegetables and protein sources like meat.
- Caryn: Lately, I’ve been having trouble keeping weight on. I burn calories so quickly and I sleep so much at night that I often get hungry in my sleep! I keep a Shaklee 180® Snack Bar by my bed so I don’t even need to turn on the light for a snack in the middle of the night. My favorite is the Peanut Butter Crunch.
- Chloè: Depends on what the event is, but normally my diet stays the same unless I am trying to drop weight, which only happens for very big events. Then I still eat the same, just less of it.
- Valerie: I focus on good recovery to maintain intense training. I continue to put healthy food in my body for recovery, but then I also pair that with Performance™ PM Recovery Complex to maximize my recovery time.
5) And any other tips or comments concerning your diet/nutrition/fueling that could help anyone who wants to stay healthy?
- Amy: I believe, in many ways, that we are all a product of our surroundings. If you surround yourself with good-quality foods and supplements, you give yourself a better chance of maintaining a healthy diet.
- Ben: Always drink plenty of water to stay hydrated so your body can work at its best.
- Caryn: For overall health, I recommend eating a wide variety of foods, and not too much of any one thing.
- Chloè: It is very hard to know what is right and what is not. The biggest tip I have is never starve yourself if you want to diet—that never turns out good in any way!
- Valerie: I have found that when I consume high-quality food, I am satisfied and I feel better!
It’s most likely obvious that frequent, smart fueling is the foundation for top performance. As any hobbit—or elite athlete—would tell you, it’s what’s inside that counts; it’s good to know that when Caryn gets ready to pull toward gold in Tokyo, Shaklee will literally be in the boat with her!