"I really enjoyed my assignment at the women's U18 national hockey selection camp in Rockland, Ontario. My task was to help the players implement appropriate nutrition tactics to maximize performance over the grueling one week training camp. Although the camp had a fantastic meal menu and several snack tables around campus, the players may have been at risk of unintentionally mismanaging their food choices and timing of nutrient ingestion in and around training to optimizing fueling, hydration and recovery...
My focus was to help the players understand the key nutrients to ingest before, during and after training. Because my direct time with the team was limited to two hours, each player was given a nutrition script that clearly modeled the type and amount of foods and fluids to ingest. Each script was formatted to the players size as well as their training and cafeteria schedule, so that the timing of nutrient ingestion could be properly managed. If the cafeteria schedule was going to limit food accessibility and prevent the players from implementing proper fueling tactics before training, they were shown how and when to use the snack table to successfully achieve their nutrition objectives. Players also received a list of nutrient dense carbohydrate and protein rich foods, so that they can understand how to use a variety of whole foods to balance health and sport performance goals during and after selection camp.
In the end, several people immediately provided positive feedback because the session helped them to identify and manage practical sport nutrition issues during the selection camp. It also gave them a chance to immediately implement nutrition tactics with confidence. It was encouraging to hear that I was able to help!
I should reveal that this opportunity wouldn't have been possible if it weren't for the Hockey Nutrition Network (HNN). Supportive HNN members such as Jennifer Sygo and Pearle Nerenberg provided me with the opportunity to share my nutrition expertise with the women's U18 Hockey Canada community. I really appreciate their support, and I hope one day to return the favour and, in addition, support other RDs interested in working with the hockey community."