Hi there! I’m a former young athlete turned pediatric sports dietitian. As a child I began figure skating and instantly fell in love with the sport. Weekly practices, following around other skaters’ private lessons in hopes of learning just one new skill turned into actual group lessons, which turned into private lessons, which quickly became 5-days-a-week summer training camps. In middle school I decided to join my school’s cross country team and soon became just as committed as I was to my ice skating. I practiced with the team but also on my own time as it would fit around my skating schedule. All-in-all, I was one active (and probably overcommitted, ha) teenager.
As my commitment to and love of these sports changed and grew, my attitude about and understanding of food did as well. Initially I only really knew about the negative impact food could have and what foods not to eat (with some exceptions). I also, being in an aesthetic sport, had the impression that the less food you ate the better (not something my coaches or parents impressed upon me but something I concluded, inaccurately, on my own). So, for a while, my food intake most days was too little to support all of my training and, on top of that, the food choices that I did make were not always the ones I needed (I didn’t actually realize this until years of being an RD and practicing pediatric sports nutrition). It wasn’t until high school, when I started to get more competitive, mastering more difficult elements in skating and working to improve my running times in cross country that I realized the crucial role nutrition played. I suddenly realized that I couldn’t show up to practices tired and hungry and that what I ate at lunch or at breakfast MATTERED. At that moment I started playing with food and creating different breakfast, lunch and dinner combos, eating scheduled snacks and overall eating MORE. It was really cool to see the positive effect on my sports and on my overall health and attitude that this simple change made. While I finally figured out my nutrition strategy and how food affected my practices and performances on my own, I did so through lots of trial and error. I realized how much better it would have been and what more I might have achieved if I had had a professional around to (a) talk to me about the positive role of food sooner, (b) help me create my strategy and answer my questions as I figured food out, and (c) talk to me about food and help me establish a healthy relationship with and understanding of food from the start. For these reasons, when I got to college I decided to study nutrition. I knew that someday I wanted to be able to help young athletes like myself understand the importance of nutrition and be that person to help them create the best strategy for themselves vs. them figuring it out on their own.
My food and nutrition philosophy is that all foods fit and that every athlete’s body is different and needs a different nutrition strategy. I don’t do diets but I do help athletes and their families understand what nutrients they need, what foods they can get these from and how to structure meals and snacks that incorporate these foods, support the active athlete and taste delicious. And I do this in what I like to call a body and food positive way because I feel strongly that while what we tell our child and teen athletes is important, the way we tell our child and teen athletes about nutrition is equally if not more important and plays a big part in their relationship and understanding of food and nutrition now and in adulthood.
My goal is to simplify complicated nutrition principles and make them easy for you and your athlete to understand and incorporate into daily life. I want you and your athlete to be able to implement new routines and recipes with confidence and without feeling overwhelmed and I want you to be able to do this in a way that promotes body confidence and positivity. Food is wonderful and powerful and delicious and simple is often times the best. I hope to show you this here on my site so please take a look around and always comment or reach out to me with any questions!