Fitness has been a buzzword in sports in recent times with Sports Minister Dayasiri Jayasekara emphasizing over and over again on fitness levels of all athletes in the country.
Diet and nutrition play a big part in fitness and the Sports Ministry, together with the Institute of Sports Medicine (ISM), have focused on athletes rigorously maintaining a proper diet plan. ISM had even given special instructions to the cooks at the Sports Hotel in Torrington (where many National Athletes in several sports are staying) along with a list of what types of food are to be served to National Athletes on a daily basis.
Athletes staying in the Sports hostel have complained that the chef is not strictly following the diet plan and is preparing whatever food that takes his fancy, which has become a big issue for them.
Especially when it comes to maintaining fat level and performance, most of the foods served in the hostel aren’t suitable for the athletes, and some of them have now resorted to get their food from outside.
According to the athletes, weight lifters are on a strict diet plan and their food is prepared separately, but the buffet for track and field athletes and others has the said problem.
In addition, the quality of the food prepared is not up to expectations and most of the fruits available are not palatable.
“We have no problem with quantity, but it’s the quality and the diet plan which is the problem,” said one athlete subject to anonymity for obvious reasons.
With the Sports Ministry eyeing Asian Games and Commonwealth glory, they have focused on many aspects of athletics including a strict diet for the athletes, spending exorbitant sums of money to provide these facilities, but officials who are responsible to make sure the operation is going smoothly have failed to do their job, where these problems have been recurring from time to time.
Last year the facilities available at the hostel were not up to standard but now most of the shortcomings have been rectified by the Ministry. Since then, as Ceylon Today revealed earlier, Sports Ministry officials and even Director General use the sports hostel for their accommodation.