A slimmed-down, fighting fit Libby Trickett is firmly on track for a comeback at the 2012 London Olympics hitting times close to those she recorded before the Beijing Games and now wants to inspire other Australians to follow in her wake by sharing her Seven Day Grape Shape Healthy Eating Plan.
The multiple Olympic and Commonwealth Games medallist couldnât believe how easily weight crept on after retiring from her glittering career in the pool in 2009 so, when she decided to set her sights on more metal in London, she turned to her sports dietitian and former Australian team mate Jessica Abbott for help.
âWhen youâre training 35 hours a week you donât have to think too much about what youâre eating, so after I hung up my swimmers I soon managed to stack on 10 kilograms. With my renewed passion for swimming and determination to get back to the top of my game the extra weight had to go,â Libby said.
âIâve now lost eight kilograms and to be honest none of them wanted to budge at all. I felt like I was doing everything right for a couple of months but nothing happened. It was frustrating but now persistence has paid off. I feel so much better lighter – Iâm just more awake and alive,â she said.
In these critical months in the lead up to the Australian Swimming Championships and selection trials for the Olympics Libbyâs focus is to get into the best shape of her life with strict training accompanied by healthy meals and snacks including fresh Australian table grapes, a delicious, nutritious, low GI alternative to sugar and fat-loaded options.
Libbyâs Seven Day Grape Shape Healthy Eating Plan, available free from selected green grocers and supermarkets and from www.australiangrapes.com.au, includes three main meals a day and plenty of snacks from all core food online blackjack 21 groups. There are two specially designed variations – one for Aussies from all walks of life, the other with the necessary nutrients and portion sizes an elite athlete needs to fuel their performance and achieve a faster recovery.
Both meal plans are high in protein, low in fat, high in fibre and include nutritious carbohydrate foods for energy.
âWe all know how to make good decisions when it comes to eating but it can be hard being consistent,â Libby said.
âIf youâre determined to shed kilos like me, itâs important to stick to your guns while also giving yourself the chance to cheat, and thatâs why there are yummy desserts in my Grape Shape Healthy Eating Plan. The trick is not to get down on yourself if you stuff up but instead persist with your weight-loss game plan,â she said.
Libby favours grapes as her go-anywhere snack and chucking them in her bag helps her make the right choices when sheâs on the go.
âIâm all for munching a bunch of grapes â theyâre an awesome snack and brilliant in breakfasts, smoothies, salads and desserts too. Best of all they explode in your mouth giving you an amazing burst of flavour,â she said.
Table grapes contain a number of nutritional benefits including natural fructose to provide energy and vitality, fibre to help cleanse and detoxify the system and Vitamin C to help maintain a strong immune system. Grapes also have a low GI certification from the Glycemic Index Foundation.
More than 1000 growers produce about 125,000 tonnes of table grapes each year, with nearly half of the bounty sent to an increasing number of markets around the world, making grapes one of Australiaâs top horticulture exports.
Fresh home-grown table grapes are available for six months from November, with the season peaking in February and March and closing in May.