Thursday, October 5, 2017

What sports dietitians wish athletes knew (and aim to teach them!)

Every fall, I work with athletes brand new to me - whether at the college I consult with, the young Olympic hopefuls I work with or in my personal practice of athletes both young and seasoned. And while there are so many different things I teach depending on the need, at the core there are a few things I wish my athletes knew, that I aim to teach my athletes and that I hope my athletes truly believe.

1. There is no one-size fits all
I, too, wish that nutrition was black and white. I wish I could recommend one pre-workout snack and have it work amazingly for every athlete. That simply is not the case. So, when I recommend 6 different pre-workout fueling options, I hope you understand that we are simply trying to find the best one that works for YOU. And just because Suzie down the street eats this or doesn't eat that, this doesn't mean it is the right choice for you. Lets find that right choice together, for your body type, goals, phase of training, food preferences, medical history, gender and age using as much of the science as possible.

Friday, July 7, 2017

When Plain Water Just Doesn't Cut It

When weather is hot and humid, any good sports dietitian will tell her athletes to keep hydrating! However, for athletes that just don't like plain water, hydration can be easier said than done. Luckily, there are other options available for those who prefer something more exciting. This blog will highlight two of my favorite alternatives to plain water.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Fueling Snacks to Bring in the Car for Summer Trips

Athletes travel a lot in the summer. Whether it is for a slew of training sessions, races and competitions or just tooling around with family, it is not uncommon to put major miles on your tires. While traveling can be a lot of fun, it can also be quite stressful for athletes trying to keep to a fueling plan that nourishes them, assists with recovery and perhaps aids in body composition changes. Here are some great snacks to keep "on board" during your travels:

**About 2-3 days ahead of your trip, sit down with these options and make a shopping list to take with you to the store so you will be ready to go!

Equipment you need:
Cooler - small and large options, depending on the length of the trip
Ice packs - for shorter trips
Bags of ice - for longer trips
Large tote for storage of shelf-stable food
Sandwich bags - for portioning out bulk snacks into smaller bags

Snack options for the cooler:
Greek yogurt
Cheese sticks
1/2 gallon or individual containers of milk
Lunch meat (uncured is best)
Slices of cheese for sandwiches
Block cheese
Hard boiled eggs
Already "cut" veggies: baby carrots, cherry tomatoes, sugars snap peas, mini sweet peppers

Snack options that are shelf-stable:
Granola bars: both high protein (10-20gm protein per bar) and low protein (less than 10 gm), depending on if you will combine with a protein source
Fresh fruit
Lean jerky
Whole grain crackers
Whole wheat bread
Whole wheat English muffins and/or bagels
Peanut butter, natural
Jelly, jam and/or honey
Dried fruit
Nuts, lightly salted
Seeds, lightly salted
Shelf-stable chocolate, white milk or soy milk (if cooler not an option)

At snacks, combine a source of carbohydrate (fruit, dairy or grains) with a source of protein (nuts, seeds, dairy, meat). Note that some foods, such as dairy, contain a bit of both, while other foods need to be combined with another food to get both nutrients. By using the list above, you will be ready for your travels, fueling in style!

Your Nutrition Coach,


Friday, May 5, 2017

5 Fueling TREATS for Athletes this Summer

One question I am often asked by athletes is where and how do treats fit into a fueling plan. It is perfectly okay to indulge in that creamy ice cream or decadent chocolate dessert 1-2 times per week as part of a well-done fueling plan. However, aim to work in one of these tasty treats as a more frequent choice to fill that sweet craving (can you say nighttime snack!?!). Here are 5 tasty recipes to check out this summer...and maybe carry into the fall, too.

Chocolate Peanut Butter "Ice Cream" - makes 2 servings
2 medium bananas, frozen
1.5 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1.5 Tbsp natural peanut butter

2 Tbsp milk (cow’s, soy or almond milk)

Combine all ingredients in food processor or blender. Eat immediately.
Optional: add 1 scoop of pure protein powder to increase the protein content.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Eating in the off-season: What should (and shouldn't!) change

As the summer nears, this means off-season for some athletes. I have plenty of athletes who are concerned about what less training will do to their bodies - and therefore fitness level and overall performance - if they do not adjust food intake accordingly. But what should be adjusted? Here are 5 things that should change and 1 that shouldn't:

1. Decrease carbohydrate intake
Since carbohydrate is your body's main exercise fuel, less exercise means less of a need for carbohydrate. So, slightly decrease your portions of grains and fruit at each meal. Do not completely cut out these foods, but do decrease the amount. For example, instead of having 1/3 plate of grains, instead choose 1/8-1/4 plate of grains (depending on your overall goals).