Olympic Swimmer Nathan Adrian Eats Five to Six Full Meals a Day To Maintain His Rock-Hard Abs and Energy Levels

Nathan Adrian
Nathan Adrian USOC/NBC Olympics

Nathan Adrian is hungry all the time.

“How much do I eat a day? I eat a solid five to six meals a day,” Adrian told Us Weekly as he ate a breakfast burrito.

But that wasn’t enough of a meal for the 27-year-old athlete.

“One breakfast burrito alone isn’t enough,” the three-time Olympic gold medalist insisted. “That’s why I got a breakfast burrito and an omelet.”

On a normal practice day (every day but Sundays, his day off), breakfast comes twice.

“A classic breakfast is a full bowl of oatmeal and then a scoop of protein powder – that’s before practice,” said Adrian. “After practice I’ll have three eggs, two pieces of toast and an avocado.”

Nathan Adrian competes in a preliminary heat of the Men's 100 meter freestyle during Day 4 of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Swimming Trials at CenturyLink Center on June 29, 2016 in Omaha, Nebraska.
Nathan Adrian competes in a preliminary heat of the Men's 100 meter freestyle during Day 4 of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Swimming Trials at CenturyLink Center on June 29, 2016 in Omaha, Nebraska. Eric Francis/Getty Images

Lunch also comes with a before and after practice meal.

“I’ll have another before-practice sandwich, and after practice I’ve been getting a lot of sushiritos,” he admitted. “And then between after practice and nighttime … I’ll get, like, one big kind of meal or snack — like a big bowl of cereal — and then try to eat something like chicken, pasta and broccoli for dinner.”

With all this food, it would seem like the sprinter would be very comfortable in the kitchen, but he insists his cooking skills are “nothing to write about!”

“I’m very objective with my food and everything I see it’s kind of like, breakdown the protein, carbs, fat and how that kind of relates to training and what time of the day it is,” he explained. “I can’t try to tell you that I’m sort of a foodie, other than that making sure that the nutrition is right to train.”

Just as important to his non-swimming schedule is sleep, especially he said, as he gets older and practices “destroy” him.

“At training camp I’ll sleep 10 to 12 hours a day because it’s eight-plus at night, and then a two hour nap between practices, and then whatever I can scrounge up later,” the freestyle swimmer explained. “It’s amazing. But, it’s very necessary.”

The Rio Olympics begin August 5 and will be streamed live on NBCOlympics.com and on the NBC Sports app. The Rio Paralympics begin September 7 and will be streamed live on TeamUSA.org.

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