Every pound of bodyweight must be carefully monitored when you’re a record-breaking swimmer like Britain’s Adam Peaty. His approach to nutrition takes careful consideration of the fact that the 25-year-old needs muscle mass to achieve explosive power, while at the same time being acutely aware that too much bulk could cause unwanted drag in the water.
As the first male breaststroke star to swim 50 meters in under 26 seconds, and 100 meters in less than 57 seconds, minor nutritional details could make all the difference in smashing his next world record.
Peaty must stay incredibly lean, while maintaining sustained energy levels by eating just enough to fuel a post-workout recovery without storing unwanted bodyfat. When nearing a competition, the 6’3″ athlete aims for around 2,500 calories per day, while swimming 40,000 meters per week.
With the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games now firmly in his sights, Peaty knows that as his bodyweight nears his competition target, those muscles will be ready to power a lighter frame.
“It is power to weight, because if you train all year while weighing 96 kilograms (212 pounds) and then come down for three or four weeks at 92 kilograms (203 pounds), you will feel so much faster because your muscle is already prepared to power 96 kilograms,” says Peaty.