Diet and nutrition for swimmers? Training and competitions

You are a swimmer. Are you worried about your food and nutrition, we give you some nutrition recommendations for swimmers, both for training and competition.

Swimming is a sport that due to its dedication – elite swimmers train 6 to 12 times a week – requires a firm commitment.

The volume of training depends on the distance you train, but preparation sessions can cover a total of 10 kilometers daily, with 1 – 2 kilometers of high-intensity sprints.

In addition to pool sessions, elite swimmers combine training sessions with weights several times a week.

Therefore, following a proper diet and nutrition for swimmers can be a challenge.

1. Swimming training and competitions
Swimming competitions can last between 2 and 7 days, usually with the qualifiers in the morning and the finals in the afternoon.

The duration of each race can vary from 20 seconds to 15 minutes, which makes swimming a very anaerobic sport, increasing the anaerobic metabolism with distance.

On the other hand, in some competitions, swimmers can compete for 2 to 3 times in one day, and have from 20 minutes to several hours of rest or waiting time between competitions.

Training sessions usually start early in the morning, and as a result, some swimmers don’t eat sooner so as not to feel bloated on their stomachs, due to lack of appetite or to sleep a little longer.

Ideally, swimmers should eat breakfast or a pre-workout before training to maximize performance.

Low-fat, liquid foods such as pre-workouts, energy drinks or energy bars can be helpful in supplying the body with fuel and keeping the stomach free of discomfort.

2. Swimmer’s Training Diet

Many swimmers train twice a day, so snacks or carbohydrate-based snacks such as energy bars, pre-training supplements, fruit and nuts need to be included in the diet to ensure that energy needs for training, recovery and growth are met.

Swimmers may also have busy schedules outside of training (e.g. work, studies, family, friends, etc.), so meals and lunches can be difficult to meet.

This requires good nutritional planning to avoid relying on fast food options.