European Championships 1500m finalist Sarah McDonald tells AW what is on her weekly shopping list


I’m a student at the University of Birmingham and coffee is an essential for 8.15am lectures and during revision time. It’s also thought to have a positive effect on training, so I feel I can justify it.


I somehow get them into every meal of the day. They are packed with nutrients and were shown this year (in a study published in Advances in Nutrition) to contain compounds that may have anti-inflammatory benefits. At the moment I’m in a phase of eating porridge with Nutella, raspberries and raisins. I split my bowl into three and it’s almost like I get three meals in one.

Cadbury’s Dairy Milk

I don’t think much of an explanation is needed here. It’s nothing performance-related. I just have a very sweet tooth. My ‘go to’ snack is usually anything sweet, but if I’m trying extra hard to be ‘healthy’, it’s sometimes yoghurt and berries. My other favourite naughty foods are cake, biscuits, sweets, pastry and a gin and tonic.

Cinnamon and raisin bagels

I love breakfast food at any time of the day and bagels are a great post-training snack because they are quickly digested and absorbed by the body. I also love crumpets with lots of butter.


If I have an afternoon session I nearly always have beans on toast and a banana beforehand, but afterwards it will be a flapjack to hold off my hunger until I get home. Hunger is a real problem in my life. I always want to eat.