At 36, skier Bode Miller is competing in his fifth Olympics. Determined to prove his ageless agility, Body decided to lighten up by losing 20 pounds with a low carb diet. Result: He posted the fastest time in the inaugural training run, reported the Washington Post on Feb. 7.
"I definitely know that winning a training run doesn’t matter much. I’ve done that so many times," reflected Miller. "I think I have a good process for how to build into a race."
Based on his experience and analysis of the challenges in the 2014 Winter Olympics, Miller decided that shedding pounds would benefit his results.
"Bode’s a master at it,” U.S. veteran Steven Nyman said. “He’s kind of dialed everything in. He knows how to figure stuff out.”
But Miller is defying conventional wisdom by cutting carbohydrates and weight, reported the Wall Street Journal recently.
"He's almost skinny," worried Mike Kenney, Miller's uncle and main coach since childhood. "You want to be big. You want to be over-muscled."
But Miller disagrees, contending that his lighter weight makes him faster and more agile, thus boosting his chances of earning a coveted medal.
"We're not going in a straight line," he said.
If we were just speed skiing then definitely being heavier would certainly help but you are changing direction the whole way down, and in Sochi fitness is going to be a huge component.
My biggest strength has been my athleticism and my ability to adapt and make recoveries and if I want to come back and race at the top, top level that I am capable of I think I have to capitalize on my biggest strengths.
As far as cutting carbohydrates in sports, more athletes as well as experts are agreeing with Miller's view that more protein and fat rather than carbs can produce success.
Physician-scientist Steve Phinney and professor Jeff Volek have collaborated on a wide range of studies and research comparing high fat, low carb diets to the traditional high carb diets typically recommended for athletes. Their findings: Low carb diets are more beneficial for athletes because they fuel the body more effectively and for longer periods of time.
They've authored two books containing their results and recommendations, one for dieters in general ("The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living: An Expert Guide to Making the Life-Saving Benefits of Carbohydrate Restriction Sustainable and Enjoyable") and one specifically designed for athletes: "The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Performance."
Agreeing with them: Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers, who recently shifted to a high fat, low carb diet: Get the details by clicking here.