Dietary and weight problems in teen athlete

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    Avatar of tee

    Hi, I’m a 16 year old cross country runner, and I’ve been having a lot of trouble with my weight and body tone for the last few months. I started seriously running a little over a year ago and now am competing as a varsity distance runner. My longest distance is a half marathon, right now I’m just training for the standard xc 5k race.

    A few months ago, I suddenly gained 10 or so pounds. Not sure why, didn’t increase my eating all that much- I wasn’t running as much because it was summer and just too hot, but I was still walking around a lot and getting more exercise than I had been while I was in school, before I gained the weight. All summer I didn’t eat very much, as I had very low appetite- but I didn’t drop a single pound.

    I’m 5’10 & weigh about 133 lb, and I ride my bike to and from school- maybe 40-60 minutes per day total. I also run cross country practice, which isn’t too intense but is still a good workout. I’m a vegetarian for ethical reasons- almost vegan with the exclusion of occasional yogurt or something, and I eat almost exclusively whole grains and virtually no processed foods. I’ve counted a few times and I only really eat between 900-1500 calories a day; I know I should probably be eating more but it’s hard to do. I want to be back in shape; I can still run but I’m heavier and I have much higher body fat than I did before I gained this weight- I just want to be back to being lean and fast. What’s going on? I’ve looked it up and the only possibility I can find is that I’m under eating; other than that I’ve talked to doctors but I haven’t really gotten any help, they’ve all been very dismissive. I really want to be competitive again, and I’m no longer happy with my performance or how I look. Can anyone help me with this? What’s going on? What am I doing wrong and why can’t I lose this weight? And if I need to be eating more, why am I never hungry?

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