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Unveiling the Secrets of a Triathlete's Diet

May 17, 2024

In the world of triathlon, relentless training isn't enough—you need the right fuel to power you through not one, but three sports. The triathlete's diet is more than just food; it's a strategic plan that keeps your energy levels up, recovery fast and performance at its best. So let's break down the essentials of what goes into a triathlete’s diet, why it matters and how you can optimise your own nutrition for maximum results.

Why Nutrition is Key for Triathletes

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of a triathlete's diet, let's talk about why nutrition is so crucial for triathlon. Triathlons are not your average Sunday morning jog —they are a test of endurance and stamina, making nutrition a crucial piece of the performance puzzle.

Think of it this way: Would you drive your car across the country on an empty tank? Didn't think so. Your body needs fuel too, and not just any fuel. Premium grade.

A well-balanced triathlon diet ensures you've got the energy to power...

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What Should I Eat as a Triathlete?

May 10, 2024

Triathlons are one of the most challenging (and awesome) multi-sport events, combining swimming, cycling, and running into a single race. Triathletes are dedicated individuals who love to train hard, often balancing training with work and family life. 

They train to test their limits, improve their health, and achieve personal goals. Becoming a triathlete requires a lot of commitment, but it's also incredibly rewarding.

I'm Taryn Richardson, the founder of Dietitian Approved and I’ve been working with triathletes for 15 years, helping them reach their performance goals through my Triathlon Nutrition Academy program. In this article, I'll share insights into what triathletes should eat to boost their performance, aid recovery, and stay hydrated during training and races.

What a Triathlete Eats for Performance

When it comes to triathlon training, nutrition plays a crucial role in providing the energy needed to endure long endurance sessions and high-intensity workouts....

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How Many Calories Should a Triathlete Eat?

May 03, 2024

Triathlon is an endurance sport that requires a significant amount of energy. It consists of three different disciplines: swimming, cycling, and running, all performed in immediate succession over various distances. As such, triathletes need to fuel their bodies appropriately to meet the high energy demands of their rigorous training and competition schedules. This brings us to the question - how many calories should a triathlete eat? In this blog post, we will delve into the world of triathlon nutrition and provide some insights into this important aspect.

Understanding Caloric Needs

The number of calories a triathlete needs can vary greatly depending on several factors including age, gender, weight, body composition, training volume and intensity, goals and medical history. However, as a rough guide, triathletes can require anywhere between 2,500 to 7,000 calories per day (10.4MJ – 29.2MJ). That's a huge range right?!

But there is no one size fits all with nutrition. And your...

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The Nutrient Deficiencies That Are Killing Your Triathlon Race Times

Apr 18, 2024

As a triathlete that loves to push their body to the limit, maintaining a balanced intake of essential nutrients is vital. Unfortunately, nutrient deficiencies are a common problem that can significantly impact your training and racing performance. Sometimes without you even knowing there's a problem!

Ensure you're optimising these three nutrients in your diet as an endurance athlete if you want to train harder and race faster:

Key Nutrient Deficiencies in Triathletes


Iron deficiency is unfortunately prevalent among endurance athletes. It’s a critical component of haemoglobin, which plays a key role in transporting oxygen around the body from your lungs to the working muscles and other tissues. Iron deficiency can lead to anaemia, characterised by fatigue, tiredness, weakness and a noticeable decline in performance. Triathletes should aim to include iron-rich foods like lean meats, lentils and green leafy vegetables such as spinach in their diet. But...

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Transforming Body and Mind: Chris Kenonโ€™s journey into Triathlon

Mar 22, 2024

Embarking on a journey towards triathlon is not just about physical endurance; it's about mental fortitude and personal transformation. Join me as we dive into the inspiring story of Chris Kenon, a triathlete from North Carolina, USA, as she shares her remarkable journey from a complete novice to a seasoned competitor.

Learning to Swim with YouTube

Chris didn’t plan to be a triathlete. She was a runner, but a chance encounter led to a spot in a team, which quickly escalated from just completing the run leg to signing up for a full Ironman. It was a daunting task for someone with limited cycling experience and who couldn’t swim, but she didn’t back down. Chris taught herself to swim in a local pool by watching YouTube Videos! She tried to mimic their form and practised until she was confident enough to tackle the race.

Transformation through Dedication

Chris's journey goes beyond athletic achievements, delving into a transformative shift in her health and well-being....

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Improve Your Performance by Improving Training Availability

Mar 08, 2024

Training availability is an important consideration for every high-performance endurance athlete. Illness or injury can leave you unable to train properly and set your goals back weeks or even months. Fellow sports dietitian Dane Baker joins me to share practical tips for improving our immune system and overall training availability.

Training availability refers to an athlete's ability to consistently train or be available to play. 

Injury and illness are the main factors that can disrupt training availability, and setback an athlete's goals. While we can take steps to reduce the risk of illness and injury, it’s impossible to completely stop them from occurring. This is why Dane prefers a focus on immune tolerance over immune resistance. By building a robust immune system, athletes are better equipped to tolerate illness and reduce its impact on training. 

If you’re looking for ways to build a stronger immune system, Dane recommends focusing on these key...

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Swim Smarter: Expert Tips to Fix Common Technique Mistakes

Feb 23, 2024

Want to transform from flailing to fast and fluid in the water? Effortless Swimming coach Brenton Ford shares his insider view on frequent flaws undermining many triathletes’ swim potential.

As a leading technique guru analysing thousands of underwater videos, he’s honed an eagle eye for subtle things sabotaging speed and efficiency. 


Take note of these common trending mistakes:

Over Rotating

Instagram makes rolling almost 90 degrees tempting. But for efficient forward propulsion, most athletes benefit from a narrower 30-40 degree rotational range using core strength rather than momentum.

Excess drag from pivoting too far simply slows you down. It also stresses the rotator cuff and compromises arm position entering the water. Think "rock the boat" not "capsize the boat"!


Exaggerating Cues

Many triathletes overcook helpful coaching cues into performance-limiting extremes:

High elbow recovery becomes restrictive jamming the arm against the torso rather...

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Strategies to fuel for triathlon when you have no appetite with Jody Walker

Feb 09, 2024

Proper fueling is essential for triathletes to get optimal performance during intense training and competitions. Some athletes, like Jody Walker, find themselves without an appetite, making it challenging to consume the necessary calories and nutrients. Jody joins me on the podcast for the third time today, to share her experience and the strategies she implements to overcome this hurdle.


Shifting to Lower Fiber Options:

Before joining the Triathlon Nutrition Academy, Jody’s diet was designed around naturopathic principles, and while she ate good food it wasn’t suitable for triathlon training. One big issue was her high fiber intake, which left her feeling full and made it difficult to consume sufficient carbohydrates for optimal training and recovery. To combat this, Jody shifted to lower-fiber options and adjusted her carbohydrate sources, helping her feel more comfortable and meet her energy needs.

Fueling your body without an appetite: 

To combat...

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Must-Read Book for Female Athletes: Up to Speed

Jan 26, 2024

It was an absolute thrill to chat with journalist and author Christine Yu about her groundbreaking new book “Up to Speed: The Groundbreaking Science of Female Athletes”.

This epic 500+ page volume comprehensively synthesizes the latest science around optimising women’s health and performance in sport. The wide range of topics explored span physiology, hormones, nutrition, injury prevention, mental health, sexuality, sports equipment design, policy reform and much more.

As Christine dug into many hundreds of studies and interviews over 18 months of intensive research for the book, some clear and concerning themes emerged:

  • We are only just beginning to unravel even basic functional knowledge around the intricacies of the female body and how sex differences impact all aspects of human performance and experience. Research specifically exploring female physiology and health remains largely underfunded compared to males.
  • Outdated paternalistic attitudes have actively...
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Nutrition Game Changers: Success Secrets from TNA Alumni

Jan 12, 2024





To dive deeper, listen to the Triathlon Nutrition Academy Podcast, EP 128 - Nutrition Game Changers: Success Secrets from TNA Alumni   

If you are interested in learning more about the Triathlon Nutrition Academy Program and what it can do for you, head HERE to learn more.


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