Mick Foley discusses the difficulties athletes face with their body image

The Sunday Paper Review looked back at the week's big talking points

BY Simon Maguire 21:22 Sunday 13 August 2017, 21:22 13 Aug 2017

Picture by: TNS/SIPA USA/PA Images

Mick Foley and Cliona Foley joined Off the Ball's Sunday Paper Review to discuss the big events over the last week.

Cycling and Athletics have come under scrutiny in recent weeks for a variety of topics but the panel reflected on eating disorders some athletes face and the struggles they have to maintain the perfect body image.

Speaking to Joe Molloy about the topic, Mick Foley said: "I remember hearing a story, actually quite recently, about a very, very well-regarded inter-county manager who...was sitting in a room and he had all the players outside and he got them to come in. He got them to strip off and he literally went and started pinching them (fat-checking)...and I thought that's appalling. 

"Number one it's appalling on so many levels but you talk about the gym culture and this goes across all sports - this kind of body image aspect of it really wasn't there before. 

"I've done a few interviews with lads, one-on-ones this summer and I would say over the past 12 months, most of the time at lunchtime, and they haven't eaten. 

"I was delighted, I sat down with one player recently and he ordered a fresh cod and chips with mushy peas...10 days before a major game and I was like 'fair play to you'. I mean at least this was such a contrast to what I'm getting used to." 

"I remember interviewing a guy, a Derry player a long, long time ago and we met in a Greasy Spoon and he must have ate a mug of gravy with his dinner, it was just the complete opposite (to what I'm used to now). But, it goes back to slimming pills, diet pills and if my memory serves me right, wasn't Sakho done for slimming pills? 

"And when it's part of your professional life, maintaining a certain shape and a certain weight and you're hitting these targets," he added.

The full discussion can be heard here:

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