Van Rensberg, D. J. (2007). Differences in nutritional intake between overtrained and non-overtrained athletes. ACSM Annual Meeting New Orleans, Presentation Number, 1579.

This study aimed to detect any differences in nutritional intake between athletes suffering with overtraining syndrome and those not. Ss aged 12 to 48 (N = 33), from Pretoria-based athletics clubs were divided into two groups: an overtrained and a not-overtrained group, based on the presence of symptoms of overtraining. Ss completed a questionnaire detailing nutritional intake over an average training day and the average amount of time spent training weekly.

There were no significant differences in nutritional intake per kilogram body weight of total energy, total protein, total carbohydrate, or total fat or micronutrient intake between the two groups. The not-overtrained group tended to use a recovery meal when compared to the overtrained group (41.6% vs. 27.27% respectively). There was a significant difference in the hours of training per week claimed by each of the groups. The overtrained group reported training for an average of 17.5 hours versus 11.5 hrs for the not-overtrained group. The energy intake (per kilogram of body weight) divided by the hours of weekly training per athlete showed statistically significant differences for total energy intake,, total protein intake, and total carbohydrate intake.

Implication. Overtraining was related to insufficient nutritional intake to meet energy requirements.

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