Low-Carb Athletes: Jenson Button
All information and quotes from here unless stated otherwise.
Jenson Button, 2009 Formula One World Champion & top class triathlete
Jenson Button is one of the best race-car drivers in the world. Contrary to most people’s expectations, driving a race car, especially an F1 car, is an athletically-demanding task and it’s the most popular sport in the world with the highest-paid athletes.
“His hobbies include mountain biking, competing in triathlons and body boarding…”
Jenson even competed in Cebu 70.3 triathlon and performed very strongly. (From Chad.)
“Jenson Button was 3rd place over all, it’s amazing!!!!!!” (Quote here and pictures from Lyka Leather).
Picture of Jensen drinking buko juice from here.
This article (“Nigel Mansell: F1 weight limits for 2014 ‘disgraceful'”) quotes Button:
“I love fitness training but there are things I can’t do because I have to be a set weight – not eat carbohydrates, not build muscle. And next year it will be worse. I don’t think any team will have ballast next year.”
Interesting. Unlike Lindsey Vonn, who rarely mentions her diet, Button’s pretty open about it.
Telegraph: “While Button said he was in no danger of developing an eating disorder, he admitted that he fasts before each race and “never” eats carbohydrates.”
AskMen: “Keeping Jenson trim is a low-carb diet which, as he went on to tell us, was pretty tough to begin with, “When you grow up eating cereal, toast and fruit for breakfast like I did, it is initially very difficult to adjust.
These days I’ll have a steak for breakfast with mushrooms and tomatoes, or I’ll have fish like salmon or haddock. Then I have the same thing at lunch – fish or meat with vegetables or salad – then the same for dinner. I’m not intolerant to carbs but if I eat too many I’d put weight on very quickly.”
Interesting, as it corresponds with Wolverine’s experience with hydration: he also found that adding salt to the water aided in absorbtion.
SportsKeeda: “Jenson’s impressive physical condition can be attributed to two things: his fitness programme and his diet. He works out for up to five hours per day when he’s not at a racetrack and he follows a low-carb diet that has been tailored to his sport’s needs.
“To keep his competitive instincts razor-sharp, he competes regularly in triathlons (swimming, cycling and running). After the season-opening Australian Grand Prix he contested a triathlon in Hawaii and he’s maintained a strict nutritional programme.
““I work out a lot,” says Jenson. “I need to be fit to do my job and a fit body results in a fit mind. However, I’ve benefited almost as much through improving my diet. It’s a cliché, but we are what we eat and I’ve worked hard with a nutritionist to ensure that I’m eating the right things at the right time of day.
““I’ve lost three percent body fat by not eating carbohydrates for breakfast.
No cereal or toast for Jenson Button! The benefits of eating the right things are huge; it’s something that I underestimated until quite recently.”
On his diet and whether it is mostly pasta:
“No, the opposite, really. We try and avoid carbohydrates from Thursday through to Saturday evening. Saturday evening he will have carbohydrates. It’s about making sure there is adequate protein there for recovery and repair, and that he eats reasonably regularly so that he maintains more of a constant blood sugar.
Graphic above from the super col Dr. Ted Naiman from Burn Fat Not Sugar.
Button would probably get even trimmer adding more fat and reducing protein, as Jimmy Moore demonstrated to the world. Eating fat does not make you fat. Maybe Button can consult with Dr. Noakes…
We know which fuel tank Jenson uses:
Jenson is a true champion who is still giving back to the community: