We're 2.5 weeks away from the 2012 Olympics, folks! (Go gymnastics!) But before we begin marveling at the physical prowess of the world's best athletes, let's take a human moment to discuss something a little more down to earth: what the heck do they eat? The U.S. Olympic team will have a full-service nutrition center with them in London modeled after their training center dining hall in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Meals are all very nutrient-and-calorie dense, but lest you think it's space-age-protein-gel stuff, think again! The most popular meal served wouldn't be out of place on your dinner table. Can you guess what it is?
Thai chicken soup!
Terri Moreman, the USOC's associate director of food and nutrition services, works with a staff of 23, including five sports nutritionists, to design "performance-based menus" for the U.S. Olympic team. She tells Outside magazine that athletes line up for the Thai chicken noodle soup, the most popular dish in the specialty dining center. Other options, should they choose to branch out, include plenty of yogurt, cottage cheese, fruit, and shakes from the "recovery station," organic salads, and main-course options like organic-beef hamburgers and other fusion dishes.
Want to make your own nutrient-dense Thai chicken soup? Moreman shares her recipe below!
Get the Recipe: Thai Chicken Noodle Soup at Outside
Related: Refuel After a Workout: What To Eat When You Get Home from the Gym
(Image: Ann Stratton for SELF via Epicurious)