Annie Thorisdottir & RP Strength – How to Optimise Recovery and Performance Through Nutrition

Train, eat and succeed like the Queen of the Dottirs!

To say that Annie Thorisdottir is a CrossFit® legend is to sell her short. The 2x CrossFit Games® winner is the original Dottir and has inspired a generation of hugely talented Icelandic athletes that have also gone on to succeed at the highest level in the sport. She is also the owner of CrossFit Reykjavik, coaching many other athletes of all ability levels to fulfill their goals.

in 2017 she fought her was to a convincing podium place finish at The CrossFit Games®, and reasserted her name as a contender to take the title of the fittest woman on earth. Nutrition is a huge foundational aspect of her success.

BOXROX spoke to her about how she works with RP Strength in order to optimise her recovery and performance through improving her nutrition. 

Annie in action

© High Intensity Photography

As well as her epic performances and longevity at the highest level in the Sport of Fitness, Annie is known for her ripped abs and athletic build. 

Hey Annie, how long have you worked with RP Strength?

I have been working with RP strength for a few months now.  

How do they help you with your nutrition?

The main thing for me is to eat enough and they help me make sure that I’m getting the nutrition I need around and during my training, as well as keeping it consistent on day to day basis.  

Does your nutrition change from day to day depending on the type of training that you are doing that day (i.e. a recovery day versus a training day for example)?

Most days it’s the same, but on rest days I don’t need to eat as much as on double training days.  However, I need enough nutrition for my body to recovery well and be ready for the upcoming week.

Why is it important for athletes to focus on their nutrition?

We have consistency in our training, recovery and sleep.  Nutrition is such a big part of being an athlete.

It’s so important to make sure that the body is getting what it needs to be able to perform at its best.  

For me it’s mostly about making sure I’m having enough food and food at the right times.  

Do you have a natural bodyweight that you feel most comfortable at when it comes to performing?

My bodyweight is around 70kg, give or take 1kg, and that’s where I feel quite good. 

Usually during competition it might be 1-2kg less, not because I try to, but because the intensity increases and the body is in a peak state to perform. A little lighter but just as strong.

How does your nutrition change during different periods of the CrossFit Year? Do you have phases where you will look to build more muscle for example? Or to cut weight before a major event such as the CrossFit Games?

My nutrition is pretty much the same throughout the year.  I might try to have a little more food during off season (and be a little bit more relaxed) to have more to build muscles but that will only be around 1kg more.  I always keep in my base conditioning as well, even though it might not be the same intensity and volume of CF workouts. Even my cheat meal on Saturday nights stays firmly in place the whole year around.

What is your speciality meal if you have to cook?

Fajitas!!  Just love it and we make them probably on average 5 days per week haha.  

What are your go-to foods when you want energy?

Probably breakfast (eggs and oatmeal) as its easy for me to eat and gives me lots of calories.

What important rules have you learnt from RP Strength that you think everyday Crossfitters should always stick to?

Portion sizes and consistency in your diet.  It has made a big difference for me to have carbs and protein as well to drink during my longer training sessions. 

What is your favourite food, regardless of whether it is part of your meal plan or not?

I think I have to say my favorite food is fajitas.  It’s not the normal ones though I have mine with peanut butter and apples – life changing 

Does a lower body fat percentage make for a more competitive Crossfitter?

Depends on lower than what.  One of the things I love about CrossFit is it doesn’t matter what you look like but what you can do with your body.  Of course being too heavy will make some of the gymnastics and conditioning harder, and being to small/light will make it it harder to move heavy loads and come down on your recovery.  It’s about finding that perfect balance for your body type.

On an intensive training day, how many grams of protein and carbohydrates would you have to eat?

I consume over 3,000 calories a day. My exact macro amounts change a bit each day depending on the food choices I make from the RP Diet Templates and whether or not I am training 1x per day, 2x per day, or resting

Why will an individualised nutrition program help an athlete reach their goals?

It’s a really important part of getting the most you can out of your training every day.  This is where you get your energy from.  I don’t think you can say one thing is best for everyone because we have different needs and different goals on what we want from our training.  

What is your nutrition like during an important competition?

I try to keep it as similar as possible to my normal days but during competition it’s sometimes harder for me to eat the same food so it becomes more simple, easily digestible and I might try to drink more of my food.  The more I can eat here the better.  

Why should athletes that want to become more competitive work with RP Strength?

We work so hard at the gym and its unfair towards yourself not to give yourself the best conditions to recover. It matters what fuel you put on your engine.

INDIVIDUALISED NUTRITION COACHING

On of the hardest parts of succeeding with a nutrition plan is finding out your own idiosyncrasies when it comes to diet and food. This also aligns with your lifestyle. For example, how much time can you dedicate to training every week? How much time can you put aside for recovery work or meal prepping? How often are you forced to miss sessions? Are their any foods that you can’t or don’t eat? 

RP Strength offer 1 on 1 personalised nutrition templates designed to fit your exact goals based on your lifestyle, training frequency and food preferences. Annie explains below how having a individualised coaching really helped her to take her nutrition to the next level.

“Since I was a little girl doing gymnastics, I’ve struggled to eat enough. My mom would feed me high calorie ice cream shakes after my 4h practices just to get energy in. That, unfortunately, doesn’t work well with performing at a high level and this is one of the areas I have neglected. I don’t want eating to become a chore, I LOVE FOOD, but I’m a slow eater and sometimes I forget to eat. Having a PROGRAM, just like my training, makes it much easier to stay on track and make sure I get what I need to perform and recover. I’ve joined the @rpstrength team, experts in their field, to help me achieve my goal – being the best version of ME.”

Big things coming out of Iceland! We're proud to welcome 2x CF Games Champion @anniethorisdottir to Team RP! # Credit to @anniethorisdottir : SORRY FOR THE LOOOONG POST, but this is something that’s important to me. Since I was a little girl doing gymnastics, I’ve struggled to eat enough. My mom would feed me high calorie ice cream shakes after my 4h practices just to get energy in. That, unfortunately, doesn’t work well with performing at a high level and this is one of the areas I have neglected. I don’t want eating to become a chore, I LOVE FOOD, but I’m a slow eater and sometimes I forget to eat. Having a PROGRAM, just like my training, makes it much easier to stay on track and make sure I get what I need to perform and recover. I’ve joined the @rpstrength team, experts in their field, to help me achieve my goal – being the best version of ME. #rpstrength #rplifestyle #dottir

A post shared by Renaissance Periodization (@rpstrength) on

HOW CAN RP STRENGTH HELP YOU?

They offer individualised nutrition coaching, the service used by athletes such as Annie, Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson, Kari Pearce and Rich Froning among many other top level individuals.

They also provide personalised meal templates designed to help you achieve your exact goals. 

Generally, a generic diet will tell you exactly what to eat and when to eat it. However, although it works in theory, a rigid and inflexible plan will usually not survive the demands of family life, a career, changeable training hours and the unforeseen circumstances that are part and parcel of normal life. Unless you are a full time professional athlete, they can be almost impossible to fulfill. As a result, your goals will not be achieved.

A meal template is just as (if not more so) detailed, but adjusts according to your precise lifestyle and goals. All Renaissance Periodization templates are specially tailored to suit your exact goals, from fat loss to muscle gain, but follow the same tried and tested principles.

A snapshot of one phase within an RP Strength template

They are based on your sex, bodyweight, height and age. These nutrition plans have helped a plethora of athletes from elite bodybuilders and powerlifters right through to the excellent Crossfitters mentioned above. They also help you with portion sizes and exact measurements, to make this part of the process as simple as it can be.

Portion sizes

FEMALE SPECIFIC TEMPLATES

Nutritional demands vary from athlete to athlete, and RP Strength also offer female specific nutrition templates to allow female athletes, whatever their current ability level, to excel on the competition floor, lose fat, build muscle, get lean, improve general health and maximise performance. 

Get your template now!