Food hits the spot with Olympic athletes’ celebrations

Months, sometimes years, of strict diets are geared toward the goal of making the games. And when they get there, it’s time to celebrate.

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Winner, Michael Norman (left) and Michael Cherry, second, race in the men’s 400-meter run at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials earlier this month in Eugene, Oregon.

Winner, Michael Norman (left) and Michael Cherry, second, race in the men’s 400-meter run at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials earlier this month in Eugene, Oregon.

AP

EUGENE, Ore. — The typical celebration for many athletes who qualify for the Olympics revolves around one thing: food.

Months, sometimes years, of strict diets are geared toward the goal of making the games. And when they get there, it’s time to celebrate.

After his win in the 400 meters at the U.S. track trials last weekend, Michael Norman was thinking big.

“Barbecue sounds good to me,” he said.

He had grand plans to head to one of his favorite BBQ joints for a slab of pork ribs with a side of seasoned rice — and some steamed broccoli, just to keep it somewhat healthy.

Teahna Daniels craved pizza after taking third in the women’s 100. But she’s got more competition scheduled for this week in the 200.

“I love cookies,” Daniels said, previewing what might be on deck after Saturday’s final.

Clayton Murphy, the men’s 800-meter winner, was thinking more drink than food.

“Due for a glass of wine,” he said.

Then there’s Javianne Oliver, who was second in the 100, and didn’t really have a food plan other than: “I’m starving. So I’m going out to dinner with my coach.”

On the other hand, shot putter Ryan Crouser hasn’t had to push away from the buffet too much over the years. One of the main goals for the 320-pound defending Olympic champion has been keeping weight on his 6-foot-7 frame.

But after setting the world record recently, then being swamped with obligations that kept him at the track late into the evening, he knew options would be limited.

“I’ll probably go for a big, old double-double hamburger somewhere,” he said.

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