It’s always fascinating to learn what top-level athletes eat. Kyra Condie, Olympian and elite climber, was kind enough to speak with me over the phone so I could pick her brain about her experience with fueling in Tokyo.
I first asked how she prepped before arriving in Tokyo. She said she had met with a dietitian from the USOPC who helped her figure out some fueling needs. Since she’s vegetarian, Condie has additional challenges to fueling herself well. (See our post on vegan diets for climbers if you want some tips!)
Condie packed tons of snacks to have on hand, “I figured it was better to have too much than to run out!” She brought along things like:
- Trail mix
- Ritz crackers
- Granola bars
- Chia squeeze pudding
- Nutri-Grain bars
She also brought her own coffee pot to boil water and prepare simple foods like oatmeal in her room. She packed a lunch box full of trail mix and other snacks to the comps.
As far as meals, “The dining hall was pretty accommodating,” says Condie. It was open 24/7 which was nice to have access to food whenever she needed it, especially for athletes arriving from a different time zone where your eating schedule doesn’t match Tokyo’s. She said the timing of eating was different, and she had to adapt to the new time zone and the comp schedules.
There was a fridge available to the athletes, so she could send someone out to get groceries for her. Due to covid restrictions, the athletes were not allowed to go out themselves. This was a bit of a challenge trying to describe exactly what to buy, especially in a foreign country. Condie says she at a lot of silken tofu cups, which was a great addition to her diet.
She also says, “I drank for Propel than I ever have in my life!” Because that is what was easily available to the athletes.
A final tip from Condie that will work well for any traveling athlete: “Try to find a food specific to the country that you’re traveling in that you like and works well for you.” For Tokyo, this meant soba noodles. If she wasn’t sure what would be available, she knew soba noodles would work well. She says she does this for World Cups as well and it’s a great trick to staying fueled.
A huge thank you to Kyra Condie for sharing your experience!