Reaching your gold standard takes superior fuel. So we’ve indentified the finest energy sources to power five popular Olympic sports

Lift more weight

Medal fuel:

dried fruit

Why?

“Have two handfuls of dates and raisins an hour before you workout,” says nutritionist Wendy Martinson. “These will give you the right muscular energy boost and will support anabolic muscle repair afterwards.”

Ace the marathon

Medal fuel:

brown rice

Why?

Start cramming brown rice three days before your race. “Aim for five grams per kilogram of body weight each day,” says Martinson. “This helps muscles store glucose, providing you with energy for longer.”

Be a star striker

Medal fuel:

wholewheat pasta

Why?

The first name on your team sheet should be an Italian stalwart. “Wholewheat pasta delivers glycogen to your liver and muscles, perfect for a sustained release of over 90 minutes,” says Fulham FC’s Steven Hines.

Pedal to victory

Medal fuel:

apple porridge

Why?

“You need a slow-release carb to get steady blood glucose supply to your glutes, quads and hamstrings,” says Martinson. “Try a bowl of porridge with 45 grams of oats and half a grated apple.”

Swim the extra length

Medal fuel:

couscous

Why?

Martinson recommends carbo-loading two days before a big swim. “Couscous is perfect for swimmers. It’s a great energy source to help your muscles pull you through every length, plus it contains protein.”