Patterico's Pontifications


The Greatest Olympian

Filed under: Sports — DRJ @ 1:28 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

While the AP wonders if Michael Phelps is the world’s Greatest Olympian (a Russian swimmer describes him as “just another person, but maybe from a different planet”), the New York Post wonders what he eats:

“Phelps lends a new spin to the phrase “Breakfast of Champions” by starting off his day by eating three fried-egg sandwiches loaded with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, fried onions and mayonnaise.

He follows that up with two cups of coffee, a five-egg omelet, a bowl of grits, three slices of French toast topped with powdered sugar and three chocolate-chip pancakes.

At lunch, Phelps gobbles up a pound of enriched pasta and two large ham and cheese sandwiches slathered with mayo on white bread – capping off the meal by chugging about 1,000 calories worth of energy drinks.

For dinner, Phelps really loads up on the carbs – what he needs to give him plenty of energy for his five-hours-a-day, six-days-a-week regimen – with a pound of pasta and an entire pizza.

He washes all that down with another 1,000 calories worth of energy drinks.”

That’s 12,000 calories a day, which is barely enough to last Phelps in a day that starts at 5 AM and includes hours of swimming.


48 Responses to “The Greatest Olympian”

  1. hahaha. I cannot imagine seeing him eat that.

    Just eating all that food probably takes a lot of stamina and muscle. Sheesh.

    I’m glad there’s at least something good coming out of this Olympics. He’s a champion, and we need people like that.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  2. How come when I eat that much I sink to the bottom of the pool?

    I do break records for sinking the fastest however.

    No Gold Medals for that ๐Ÿ™

    Go team U.S.A.!

    Oiram (983921)

  3. Well, the man is quite tall, and is going for two world records each day at the Olympics, with less than two hours between the events themselves! Incredible, he deserves all of the attention and accolades coming his way.

    Dmac (874677)

  4. Check that – less than ONE HOUR between events.

    Dmac (874677)

  5. Some of us are lucky and can consume enormous caloric intakes. I don’t compete in anything now, but can still eat a whole pizza and not gain an ounce. Kudos to Phelps for being auszgezeichnet.

    How many competitive swimmers keep up the heavy eating after they stop the practices and competition and turn into bowlegged sows? And what does all that fat intake do to Phelps arteries or does all the exercise ameliorate the downside?

    Years ago I worked nights with a 5’8″ dude who weighted in at 450 pounds. He used a bowling bag to carry in his lunch and took three hours to devour it all. Claimed to drink 1 gallon of milk a day, same as what ayoung Cassius Clay in boxing training did in Deer Lake, Pa. Anyway, the dude later had hisstomach stapled and looked like hell after big weight loss.

    So Phelps can eat all he wants and needs and the denizens of parts of LA need the nanny state to intervene. I knew junkies who jonesed for twinkies and Kools when they did their heroin and crack, but aren’t most heavy junkies into the emaciated look?

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  6. Madmax, you and Phelps can take your metabolisms and you can all go right to hell…


    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  7. #6 We’ll see what he is like after retirement. Mark Spitz looks fit enough albeit totally gray.
    I think some of us tend to return to our youthful weights as we become more decrepit. I was only one forty in high school at six three and managed to powerlift to two thirty in mid-twenties while being a Schwarzenegger fan. That dude was a brute and great European athlete even at age sixteen. I am now struggling to stay about one ninety. I think the governator now tends to being porky, at least in some more recent swimsuit photos. Women have told me the ideal body is Mick Jagger in all its wiry glory, but he looks like a skinny geezer to me, almost on a par with Keith Richards as far as wrinkles also.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  8. I am now struggling to stay about one ninety.

    I would do serious harm to a stranger for the chance to struggle with keeping 190…

    Scott Jacobs (fa5e57)

  9. You’re too down on yourself. Your weight is probably ideal for seven foot four. Or maybe you should think like some ladies I’ve known- convert pounds to kilos. Lady says she weighs 100 and is DD bra. Yeah, right. She turns out to be wide as the door and two hundred twenty pounds.
    In any case, thyroid glands can be part of the problem with weight. Too many people I know get their exercise using the remote or say the only exercise they approve of is serving as a pallbearer for friends who EXERCISED.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  10. I am thinking the same re: the 12k cal. a day diet–what will Mr. Phelps do when he is no longer swimming 5 hours a day? Hope he adjusts as well as Mr. Spitz did.

    atmom (71c70e)

  11. Better Half told me that if she ever met Phelps, she would be leaving me.

    I thought I ate a lot, until I read that. Wow.

    JD (5f0e11)

  12. My metabolism used to be insane. I was 6 foot 3 and 185 and ate anything I wanted. Now, I have to do Krav Maga 4 night a week to hover slightly north of 200 lbs.

    I just started an all sushi diet, on Monday, and have lost 6 lbs, mainly in my wallet, and feel great.

    JD (5f0e11)

  13. Pity so many people tend to obesity even if they are considered poor financially. Not that the heroin chic, bulimic look appeals to me at all. There’s something to be said for pleasantly plump- they provide shade in summer and warmth in winter. Deciding what to devour can be a chore. I’m told commercial monkey food would be ok for a human too, but I doubt I’d enjoy the taste. Give me a juicy rare steak or any number of rich desserts like creme brulee, chocolate souffle, pecan or shoo fly pie. So you slave in the kitchen because you were told ages ago by your Mennonite inlaws that kissin’ don’t last, cookin’ do and the lady will complain that you made her fat(ter)..jajajaja.
    These Olympians must have special genetic makeups. I bet Phelps will remain competitive as long as he lives, at least in his age bracket.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  14. JD,

    My kids are slim even though they eat almost as much as Michael Phelps, and I can attest it’s hard on the wallet. But I don’t think we could do an all-sushi diet.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  15. madmax, carbs are a big part of what make you fat, especially the refined stuff, which is super cheap and tasty. That’s what poor folk eat, and that’s why poor folk are fat. Still, I’d rather have fat poor than hungry poor.

    Far floats, but I don’t think that’s what PHelp’s strategy is.

    And yeah, I am sure Phelps’s genes are quite special. I wonder if he’ll ever get to sell them to a boutique, and I know for a fact that he could buy a Porsche for what Fairfax Cryobank would pay for a sperm sample.

    But that’s only part of the equation. He’s suffering pain when he works that hard. he’s got spirit that I can’t imagine.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  16. “fried-egg sandwiches loaded with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, fried onions and mayonnaise.” Damn, that sounds good!

    gp (78ea4b)

  17. DRJ – At 6’3″ I am the smallest of the 3 boys in my family. My younger brothers are both 6’5″ and over 250 lbs. I cannot imagine how my parents could afford to feed us. Sushi for lunch and dinner, and tea for breakfast seems to be working. I spend a lot of time in the head, it seems.

    JD (5f0e11)

  18. Carlos y Pepes in Ft. Lauderdale has an enormous chimichanga dish that must be very heavy on calories and quite yummy to boot.

    Or try the Blooming Onion at the Outback. I think it is around 2300 cal. The Cheesecake Factory’s carrot cake slice is around 1500 calories and right now I am in mood for some seafood alfredo fettucini heart attack on a plate. I’ve suffered today with rather sparse breakfast and lunch of flax cereal with banana and rice milk, scrapple and eggs and a liverwurst sandwich, but Phelps friend egg sammies would do me fine any time..the incredible, edible egg. Btw, the human egg is largest single cell in body and the sperm the smallest.
    Agreed that all that effort by these athletes is grueling and painful.

    madmax333 (0c6cfc)

  19. No wonder vegans can’t swim, or even float.

    Glen Wishard (02562c)

  20. Your size makes you a perfect fit at our house, JD, but you’d have to eat barbecue, Mexican food, burgers and steaks instead of sushi.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  21. and, dinner is at what time?

    Another Drew (131739)

  22. AD,

    For you – whenever you can drop by.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  23. DRJ – I consider the food groups to be steak, beef, pork, bacon, all other protein type dead animals, and fish.

    JD (5f0e11)

  24. Thanks, DRJ.
    Next time I’m driving through West Texas, I’ll just follow my nose.

    Another Drew (131739)

  25. Better Half likes to joke that I have been on a modified Adkins diet since age 10.

    JD (5f0e11)

  26. JD, I call it the Fatkins diet.

    Juan (4cdfb7)

  27. FWIW, I don’t know what Jesse Owens ate, but he sure made Hitler eat a lot of crow at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Seems that Phelps brought along his own “Murder of Crows” for the competition to feast upon. Good for US and Phelps.

    C. Norris (142581)

  28. US gymnast Chellsie Memmel has been competing on a broken ankle since August 4.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  29. These Olympic athletes are incredibly driven. Kudos to them.

    DRJ (8b9d41)

  30. DRJ – The American gymnast that hurt her ankle and could not compete trains at the same Academy that my oldest takes gymnastics at.

    JD (5f0e11)

  31. Damn, his body is smoking hot too. Now that I am jobless maybe I should start swimming 5 hours a day and eating like a pig…

    TLove (953364)

  32. T..
    Try swimming for about an hour/day, and eating reasonably, and you’ll be as hot as you need to be.

    Another Drew (131739)

  33. AD – Tlove is already teh hawt ๐Ÿ˜‰

    JD (5f0e11)

  34. Awww…Thanks JD.

    TLove (953364)

  35. Ah, the mind runs rampant!

    Another Drew (131739)

  36. I vote for Carrie Walsh as the Greatest Olympian.

    JD (5f0e11)

  37. Sorry folks… Mary Lou will always be number one to me…

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  38. Scotty, I thought I was #1 to you….

    TLove (953364)

  39. You’ll have to settle for number two, unless you’ve won olympic gold with a broken ankle… ๐Ÿ™‚

    Scott Jacobs (d3a6ec)

  40. “Michael Phelps? Hey, it’s Kobayashi. Thanks, I’m a big fan of yours, too. I know you’re busy and all–but I just wanted to say you might be overdoing the eating thing just a bit.” ]:-)

    M. Scott Eiland (a16843)

  41. Hahaha. That could be his post swimming career.

    TLove (953364)

  42. Wow! I think watching and measuring this guys
    POO would qualify for some kinda record.

    12,000 calories HAS to translate into several
    meters of BM.

    I mean, think about it!

    Jobo (24189c)

  43. I wish his face wasn’t so hit and miss. He has that Eli Manning thing going.

    TLove (953364)

  44. Better Half asked why he has not got his teeth fixed. Surely he could afford it.

    JD (5f0e11)

  45. Those are things you do after you stop competing.

    Another Drew (131739)

  46. The 12,000 calories is needed to to create the fuel necessary to perform at the level he performs at. Ave of 5 hours per day in the pool. Swimming is one of the most difficult endurance sports. Much more endurance than running marathons or cycling. Lance during the height of his cyclying was consuming 6k+ of calories a day. With all sports, it helps to have started with the right genes, but swimming much more than other sports requires sheer hard work. That is not to say the other sports dont require hard work, just the amount of hard work exponentially more than other sports, even running and cycling.
    The calories burned during an hour of swimming is significantly more than an hour or cycling or running.

    The only real issue with that amount of caloric intake is what goes in must come out.

    Joe - Dallas (3f6913)

  47. Speaking of diets, what was the old joke about PETA – “People Eating Tasty Animals.” Always worked for me.

    Dmac (874677)

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