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Signs you might not be eating enough to support triathlon training

Jul 01, 2022

Signs you might not be eating enough to support triathlon training

How do you know if you’re eating enough to support training for three sports? 


The body is smart. It will give you some warning signs if you’re not fuelling properly. Some warning signs will be a light touch like a feather, others will be harder like a brick being thrown at you or, louder still, like being hit by a truck!!

Did you know that your body fuels training first, before spending energy to support our daily bodily functions – like breathing, digesting, growing, and living!!??

Here are a few signs you’re not eating enough:

  • You’re not training well and/or your motivation to train is low
  • You’re not recovering very well or quickly enough
  • You keep getting annoying niggly injuries 
  • You continuously get sick or can’t seem to shake things
  • You have weird or exacerbated gastrointestinal issues
  • Your menstrual function is light, irregular or completely absent (if not overridden by contraception)
  • Your sex drive is reduced
  • You have restriction and/or binging behaviours with food

Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S) - What is it?

The syndrome refers to impaired physiological function including, but not limited to:

  • metabolic rate 
  • menstrual function,
  • bone health 
  • immunity 
  • protein synthesis 
  • cardiovascular health 

Caused by relative energy deficiency - either by inadequate energy intake and/or increased energy expenditure.


Being in low energy availability just means that you don't have enough energy available for those things. And it's a continuous spectrum where, at one end, we've got a healthy athlete, optimal energy availability, regular menstrual cycle, really strong bones and things are working properly. To the completely other end of the spectrum where you're in low energy availability and you don't have enough energy available for the body's function.


So what can you do about it?

  • Learn how to periodise your nutrition to your training and race days
  • Get the right team supporting you – a Sports Dietitian (yes, me!!) and a Sports Physician
  • Join the Triathlon Nutrition Academy (doors open early Sept) – learn for yourself how to eat strategically, fuel your body for what it needs, understand periodisation and what you need to do for your recovery nutrition, pre-training nutrition, and what you’re doing on the bike and run.


Learn more by listening to this EP 48 of the Triathlon Nutrition Academy Podcast: Click HERE

And be sure to join the Dietitian Approved Crew Facebook Group to catch me LIVE on Coffee & Questions. On the first Thursday of every month at 8:30am AEST (Brisbane time). Come and pick my Advanced Sports Dietitian brain on anything endurance nutrition-related.



If you’re interested in joining the Triathlon Nutrition Academy, pop your name on the waitlist NOW | Join the TNA Waitlist

If you are looking for a Sports Dietitian and want to learn more about working with me, click HERE to see what I offer for private, 1 on 1 consultation.



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