If you call yourself a Spartan, you’d better be able to tell me who Hobie Call is. A legend in Spartan racing, Hobie was the race for many years. What makes him a true legend? He went out just as strong, if not stronger, than he came in.
Hobie is known for a smile at the start line and high-fives near the finish. But behind that fun-loving face is a serious athlete dedicated to the sport in every way. Want to make it to his level? You’d better up your nutrition game.
Hobie’s focus on nutrition began long before the barbed-wire crawls and bucket carries. He credits an early discovery of lactose intolerance with knowing that “what you put in your mouth makes the whole difference.”
Spartans train to achieve. A Trifecta, a podium spot, a feeling of accomplishment. It doesn’t matter. Hobie is no different. What matters is how you achieve it.
“I never would have achieved what I have without good nutrition. When you’re trying to eat healthier, don’t focus on taking things out of your diet. We hate being told we can’t do things. Then it always becomes a struggle discipline-wise. Focus on more good. The goal is, the more you get good things in the less room you have for the junk.”
“The higher you go, the more nutrition matters.” Nutrition must evolve as your training evolves. Increasing your training? Increase your nutrition focus. Coming up on a race in the next month? Tighten the reins. Hobie has developed a good baseline that’s his way of life and supports his longevity. But he tightens up his eating habits during the peak of the season, especially during the week leading into a race. Although he used to pay closer attention to knowing just how many grams of carbs, proteins, and fats he had at meals and snacks, he now knows those instinctively and just aims to get a good balance.
“You want to make a 10 percent jump in performance, your nutrition has to change 10 percent too.”
“It starts with understanding macronutrients and micronutrients, and ends with nutrient timing.” Hobie explains that most people have this backward. They focus on the day before and the morning of the race, but although those times are important, they will do little to create the platform necessary to have maximum performance come race day.
Which area of nutrition does Hobie feel people understand the least and miss out on the most? “Healthy Fats. They’re not getting in enough.” Healthy fats not only help you feel satisfied, but they provide essential nutrition that helps us recover, reduce inflammation, and support the fat-soluble vitamins that play a role in longevity. If you want to perform as well as Hobie has for this many years, you’d better start focusing on longevity.
Hobie's Secret? Search for the diet that eliminates cravings
“Some people are willing to destroy their long-term health for short-term goals. I hate that attitude, because there will become a time when you regret it. I didn’t do all of this to win races; I wanted to be healthy. I spent a lot of years just trying to become more disciplined. It took a long time to realize that success is getting the right diet so you don’t have cravings anymore. Get your diet right to get your body happy, then you know you have it figured out.”
Good places to start:
Your meals planned for you. Download a free Spartan Meal Plan.