The timeless tradition of carbo-loading before races resulted in some fun social media traffic this weekend at the USA Track and Field Championships in Des Moines.
Here’s the backstory:
Due to a flight delay, world silver medalist Courtney Frerichs didn’t land in Des Moines until midnight the night before her steeplechase preliminary race.
Luckily, her husband, who was already in Iowa, picked up some spaghetti and meatballs from the local Olive Garden and had it ready for Frerichs to chow on in the early hours of Thursday morning.
We posted the clip of Frerichs talking about her late night meal after her steeplechase prelim.
WATCH: What do you eat when your delayed flight gets into Des Moines at midnight?@courtfrerichs8 found out yesterday.
— CITIUS MAG (@CitiusMag) June 21, 2018
The tweet caught the watchful eyes of Olive Garden’s social media team, who responded with well wishes to Frerichs.
Great job today, Courtney! 👏 Congratulations on qualifying for finals. We hope the carb-loading makes Saturday a breeze. 🏁🏃♀️ Let us know when you're up for round two. 🍝 We'll be rooting for you!
— Olive Garden (@olivegarden) June 21, 2018
The night before her steeplechase final, Frerichs tweeted photos from the West Des Moines branch of the famed Italian restaurant chain.
A big thank you to Nate at the @olivegarden in West Des Moines for taking such great care of my family tonight and helping fuel me for the big race tomorrow! 🍝 #carboloadingcomplete pic.twitter.com/2nFQglgHx5
— Courtney Frerichs (@courtfrerichs8) June 23, 2018
It turns out Olive Garden provided her entire family a free dinner — including dessert. The carb-heavy meal seemed to work for Frerichs as she finished in a strong second place less than a second behind champion Emma Coburn.
“I pretty much always go to Olive Garden when I’m racing in the states because I know their meals work,” Frerichs said.
Happy conclusion to this story: @courtfrerichs8 finishes 2nd in the #USATFOutdoors steeple after her Olive Garden pre-meet dinner. @olivegarden, can we get you guys in touch about a sponsorship deal? pic.twitter.com/Z0UIKNVKnN
— CITIUS MAG (@CitiusMag) June 23, 2018