Nutrition the key to Onuora's bronze medal success



Nutrition the key to Onuora's bronze medal success

27 August 2016 / 15:00

Anyika Onuora raced to a bronze medal in the 4x400m relay at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, and she puts her performances in recent years down to her improved diet.

While she insists to never have had a poor diet, a change of coach after London 2012 brought with it a new nutritional plan – and the results are clear.

In the four years since London 2012 the 31-year-old from Liverpool has won two bronze relay medals at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, two golds and a bronze at European Championships in 2014 and 2016, as well as a World Championships bronze last year.

So how has she done it?

“Before, it was a mixture of carbs, and other things, but quite a lot of carbs,” she said.

“The diet was not bad, I’ve never really had a bad diet, but I was eating some of the wrong foods.

“Over the previous Olympic cycle, even though I had a great nutritionist, my intake of carbs was just a little bit higher than it should’ve been.

“But since 2012 it has been very much protein based, and then carbs in the evening.

“I have meat for breakfast, steak and eggs – I always get a good look when I tell people that.

“It’s red meat on rotation in the morning, then lunch is white meat, so either turkey or chicken – mainly chicken – and then dinner is whatever I fancy.

“I usually have fish because sometimes I get tired of eating heavy meat all the time.

“And then I’ll have that with colourful carbs like sweet potato or broccoli, so no white carbs like potato or rice or pasta.”

Steak for breakfast? Sounds good to us!

The plan does come with its restrictions though, we’ve already heard about the lack of carbs – that means no bread, rice, pasta or potatoes – as well as a restriction in sugar.

“Because it is so strict it drives me mad sometimes. But I do have the odd cheat meal, every now and again,” added the Liverpool Harrier.

“When I’m in the States my favourite is chicken and waffles, then my second favourite is eggs Benedict with salmon.

“It sounds like it’s kind of healthy anyway but I try not to eat bread normally, and then the Hollandaise sauce too, it’s not as good as people may think!

“And because I don’t eat much sugar, even though it’s amazing, but I can’t eat it, so when I can, I go for apple crumble, or rhubarb crumble.

“I’ll go somewhere like a gastro pub and just indulge – which you have to do every now and again, to stop yourself going mad.

“Food is my favourite subject!”

Sportsbeat 2016