A Diet for the Record Books: 9,000 Calories a Day for Lolo Jones

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Months ago, United States Olympic Hurdler Lolo Jones would have grimaced at the sight of any processed or fatty food. Now, she welcomes it.

After failing to make the US National Track and Field team earlier this year, many thought that Jones was done competing. Even she thought so. Jones slowly slipped into depression, and dropped some weight. One of her coaches couldn’t even recognize the former toned girl in this skinny frame.

But Jones is going for another Olympics.

This time, though, Lolo Jones is on the United States Olympic team for the 2014 Olympics. What does this mean? Do they now have Olympic Indoor Track and Field? Nope. Jones is a part of the United States Olympic Bobsled Team. Yes, that’s right. Bobsled.

To prepare for the Winter Games in Sochi, Lolo has been bulking up. Now almost 30 pounds heavier at 158lbs, she is almost at her goal: 160lbs. What did she do to gain 30 pounds in only a few months? Jones is on a 9,000 calorie per day diet. She eats sour patch kids, m&ms, McDonalds Big Macs, and various other foods that would have revolted her months ago.

What does this huge weight gain mean for the hurdler? Jones is perhaps the most iconic athlete ever in the Olympic games – not only for her talent – but for her looks. Lolo Jones is the Helen of Troy for track and field. Everyone wants to be her, and everyone wants to look like her. So, the 30 pound weight gain could only mean bad things for her physical appearance, right?

Wrong.

After gaining 30 pounds, Lolo Jones does not have any excess fat than she did before. The weight that Jones did gain is mostly muscle weight. Although some of it is bulk, Jones needs this to power the huge sled. But, she still looks great. She is still toned, but there’s just more muscle on her. She isn’t as lean as before, but she surely is not fat.

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(photo courtesy of USA Today)

What does this mean for Jones’ track career? After talking with both her track and bobsledding coaches, Jones has agreed to maintain a weight of no more than 160 pounds. This means that she will be able to compete in both sports, and if needed, will still have time to drop weight for hurdling in the 2016 Rio Olympics, which she plans to compete in.

Good for her. Jones is attempting to be one of few athletes who double in the winter and spring Olympic games. Best of luck to her as she pursues her dream of being a two-sport athlete in the Olympics. 130 days to go. You go, Lolo!

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