Veritas Collaberative Professional Visit Recap

So about a week and a half ago, I had the opportunity to visit Veritas Collaberative for a FREE professional visit. How awesome is that? Well let me tell you it was VERY awesome! It really seems like so long ago that I went. I seriously had the best time and I am extremely excited to get to share it with you all.

My day started out Thursday morning waking up at 3:30 A.M. in order to drive to the airport and catch my 6:30 A.M flight. My wonderful mom woke up and drove me there. 🙂

Ate some honey nut cheerios before I left because my hunger was real at 4:30 A.M. that morning.

Flew into Dallas. Ate a snack and had an iced coffee.

IMG_1254[1].JPG

IMG_1255[1].JPGThen flew into Raleigh/Durham where I caught a taxi for the first time. Veritas had arranged an airport taxi for me to catch but I could barely understand the guy – LOL – thankfully I caught something about “zone 15” and asked someone that worked there who pointed me in the direction. Adulting at it’s finest right?

IMG_1257[1].JPG

IMG_1258[1].JPG

I got to the hotel around 10:30 A.M. I couldn’t check in yet and I was super hungry so I decided to stretch my legs and find a place to eat. I found this place that had great reviews and seemed to have an awesome menu. Lots of gluten-free options for my gluten intolerant self – a bun made out of plantains and they had yucka fries too! Looked super cool and sourced local ingredients. I get there and the power is out on that side of downtown. 😦 Guess that means I will have to go back and try out that restaurant another time. Asked a local for directions on how to get back to the other side of town because I got confused. Got back and ended up just getting a lettuce wrapped burger and fries from this place and it was pretty good. I was SUPER hungry regardless so anything sounded good at this point.

 

IMG_1268[1].JPGIMG_1267[1].JPG

IMG_1266[1].JPG

 

Went back to the hotel and it was ready so I went up to my room and got settled in. Stretched out on the bed and watched an episode of Catfish. I had never watched the show before Matt introduced me to it and now I love it lol. I don’t know why I find it super entertaining but I do. Anyone else a fan?

Got ready and headed out to catch the shuttle for the first day of the professional visit.

IMG_1276[1].JPG

 

IMG_1270[1].JPG

IMG_1273[1]

IMG_1271[1].JPG

I was the only dietitian at the professional visit. The others were either therapists or social workers. Everyone came from all over the place to visit. Everyone was super nice! The people at Veritas were super nice too.

IMG_1297[1].JPG

Especially this girl! Hey Teresa!

The first day we visited the Adult Hospital. We had two presentations. I especially enjoyed Jennie Lacy. She was so relatable. She said something that really stuck with me. “Everyone could use a little DBT.” Dialectical Behavior Therapy- To those who are not familiar with mental health. DBT is a cognitive-behavior therapy that strongly emphasizes the use of behavioral principles to facilitate change. This treatment blends an emphasis on acceptance (of oneself, of reality) with an emphasis on changing behavior. In other words that sometimes (if not most of the time) we need to slow down and think about how we are reacting and if this is really helping or harming. I like to think of it as being more present which is something I am continuing to work on every day.

One thing I had to laugh about was that they scheduled a snack. I was thinking “These are my kind of people.” They even made a gluten-free dessert so I could have something. I was spoiled this trip for sure.

IMG_1280[1].JPG

Gluten-free cupcake and coffee.

After that the shuttle came and picked us up and took us to Nanasteak which was connected to our hotel. We had a social hour before the dinner where Teresa introduced me to Leah Graves the director of the head RD of their nutrition department. Leah reminded me so much of Amy, my favorite professor at Marshall. I joked that I thought Amy must be following me everywhere. Leah was great with answering any questions I had about their nutrition program. Fun fact she went to college in Oklahoma. Teresa had told her I lived in Oklahoma for a while so we chatted about the best coffee shops and how I got into eating disorders. Loved chatting with her! How I got into eating disorders was such a happy accident I think but in reality God had a plan all along.

We then had dinner. Dinner was awesome. I don’t eat red meat super often because of my genetic cholesterol issues but Thursday I had red meat twice in one day – YOLO. I was so hungry all day Thursday. Anyone else get like that when they fly? I ordered the ribeye with collard greens and fries and it was delicious. For dessert they had a flourless soufle. ❤

IMG_1281[1].JPG

IMG_1282[1].JPG

IMG_1284[1].JPGIMG_1283[1].JPGI was seated between Leah and Teresa which meant there was a TON of good conversation the rest of the evening. I had planned on possibly doing a yoga video when I got back to the room but I was so tired. I have no idea how I did it being up since 3:30 that morning. Called mom, Facetimed Matt and went to bed.

IMG_1285[1].JPG

The next morning I packed because I had to check out and then we were picked up by the shuttle to go to breakfast and begin the last day of the professional visit.

IMG_1289[1].JPG

On Friday we visited the children’s hospital and had presentations about pediatric psychiatry. We then breaked for lunch where they had a gluten-free sandwich just for me. I failed at taking a picture of lunch but it was so delicious. It was a chicken, mozerella, and basil sandwich. I also got a salad and some butternut squash curry soup.

I have never felt so taken care of at a conference before. Veritas is awesome. Their culinary program that they have is unbelievable. We toured the children’s hospital including the kitchen where they do all kinds of food exposures with the patients. From making home-made pasta to doing cupcake wars with their RD’s and therapists. Count me in for a taste testing!

IMG_1350[1].JPG

What is really cool is that the chefs are trained by Veritas to talk/behave a certain way about food so that they don’t trigger the patients. I really think Veritas has thought of everything. With eating disorders, patients a lot of the time love to cook, but they will not eat anything that they cooked. At Veritas patients will eventually have to eat what they cook. Of course this process is handled by their multidisciplinary team. To tell someone to just eat when they have an eating disorder is a joke.

IMG_1350[1]

I really loved the way that Veritas did their nutrition program. Instead of having patients measuring food (which I think is not mentally healthy and have heard some of my patients first started measuring food in treatment), they utilize visual coaching. This means that patients put an amount on their plate and a team member tells them if it is enough or not. I could go on and on about the treatment at Veritas but that would probably get boring to you all.

IMG_1344[1].JPG

IMG_1345[1].JPGDid I mention the place was beautiful?

IMG_1279[1].JPG

IMG_1346[1].JPG

 

They also have each patient make a piece of art upon the end of their treatment that reflects how they feel now exiting treatment. I LOVED THIS. Here are a few pictures!

IMG_1343[1]

IMG_1348[1].JPG

IMG_1342[1].JPGIMG_1349[1].JPGI learned so much on my trip to Veritas. The learning curve is HUGE when entering an eating disorder job. I always say that I don’t think I had a clue what I was doing when I first started at DECC, but gosh I have truly learned so much. I love my job. Yes it is VERY hard and you have the days when you and your patients cry together but it is SO worth it. My heart felt so full leaving Veritas and being with all my likeminded eating disorder peeps. <333

IMG_1340[1].JPG

Oh and Hi from Stella the therapy dog! 🙂

Have a great day!

Whit

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Why I changed my blog name + Recap

Hey guys!

I know it has been a while. Things have been super busy lately. More on that later! So I wanted to explain why I changed my blog name. My former blog name was “RD2be2016.”

Reason #1: As of November, I passed the RD exam. No longer an RD2be! I still remember that feeling and that it was the best feeling ever to be able to introduce myself as the dietitian to my patients/clients. I was talking to my mom yesterday about this and how I think I now take it for granted which I should not do. It was a LONG path to become a RD and I feel super blessed to be where God has me right now.

Reason #2: I chose the name because tacos hold a special place in my heart LOL. No, but really I do enjoy eating tacos! I love tacos. Definitely one of my favorite foods for sure. Lately I have been seeing memes that say “If I had to choose to eat healthy or tacos, I would choose tacos.” Tacos can be a part of a healthy diet – more on that on this post about intuitive eating. It seriously grinds my gears when I see memes like that. I always tell patients/clients that my boyfriend is Guatemalan and if I could not eat tacos, he would probably break up with me LOL. All foods fit.

matt taco

Here is a picture of my wonderful boyfriend wearing a taco shirt. I love him.

A lot has happened since I last blogged!

I have started a third job as a contract dietitian working with individuals with disabilities at Hopewell Community Services. I do nutrition ed and help make their menus for the week. I really like it so far!

I have started working towards my eating disorder certification through IAEDP. I am so excited for this! 🙂 I have said before that I feel like God has called me to work in eating disorders and sports. I think my dream job would be to work with athletes who struggle with eating disorders. 🙂

Matt came in from Oklahoma and we went to the beach with my family. It went by way too fast but I am so thankful for time spent with him and my family. We will see each other again in September and I am already counting down the days.

matt beach 2

When Matt and I leave each other we both really struggle. I thought it would eventually get easier over time, but I think it has gotten harder because we grow closer the more time we spend together. I always make sure to schedule a few clients the next day after he laves to make sure I keep myself busy. That always helps.

Last week was difficult for me with Matt leaving and some other things happened that did not work out the way that I thought they should.  I won’t go into detail, but I was really upset and disappointed. I know that I need to be still and let God do what He thinks is best, but that is sometimes easier said than done.

Matt is always super helpful in these types of situations. He always reminds me of the positive things in my life. I think it is okay to be upset and really feel your emotions. I am a big believer in really feeling things. I think there’s an issue if you’re not able to feel your emotions and talk about them. However, I also don’t think you should dwell on them either. Matt always asks me to name off the positive things in my life or the things that make me the most joyful. We always pray about the situation too.

I recently read this post about stillness and it really resonated with me. Matt and I read a devotion that was what I needed to hear. Isn’t it the coolest thing that there are so many people on this earth, but God cares about us as individuals and knows what we need when we need it?

Isaiah 26: 3-4 “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. Trust in The Lord, forever, for The Lord  himself, is the rock eternal.”

Well, I am off to do a yoga video before I head to work to see some patients!

I hope you all have a wonderful Monday!

Whit

 

 

Healthy Eating and Movement

So I’ve been wanting to write this blog for a while now and I’ve been waiting for the right time to do so and I feel like now is the time. With summer approaching and everyone trying to get their “beach body,” it seems like society is more confused about what healthy eating and movement are more than ever before. Bring your body to a beach and you got a beach body! Now I have nothing against people wanting to get more healthy. I think everyone should have some movement and get some fruit and veggies in in a way that feels good to their body.

Does anyone watch The Bachelorette? I do. Even on the bachelorette, there was a guy that said he did not eat bananas because he was on a ketogenic diet. I thought this show was about drama and romance, not diets. Come on guys. Enough is enough. Luckily he did not get a rose.

I have not always been against diets. At one time I was all about super clean ingredients and not having desserts, and not fueling correctly for my first half marathon. I talk more about that in this post. I truly believe that it was God’s grace that I did not end up in a full blown eating disorder and that this only lasted about six months. I do not think that I even realized what was going on and did not realize I had a problem until I realized I had lost weight, but I guess that is what happens with most disordered eating. It seems like the cool thing to do and that everyone is doing it. Everyone seems to be on some diet these days.  I do not remember changing what I ate or my behavior. I just remember not eating that way and not moving my body that way any more. Instead of running every day, I found other movement I enjoyed such as strength training, yoga, and some days rest days! Instead of restricting foods, I found intuitive eating and include all foods in my diet. I utilize the hunger-fullness scale and eat when I am hungry and stop when I am full. I started reading Kylie’s blog more and more instead of blogs that discussed diety behaviors. Now as an eating disorder dietitian, I get to help others achieve a healthy relationship with food and I think it is the most rewarding job ever.   While I still feel called to sports nutrition, I truly believe God has called me to the field of eating disorders as well. For me, my dream job would be working with athletes who suffer with eating disorders, but I am doing my best where God has me right now and loving every second of it.

17362069_1616651188348227_8705784582725317473_n

16387392_1560081570671856_3557674036768121771_n

For me, healthy eating is 3 meals a day, and 2-4 snacks depending on how my body feels that day. It is including a protein with a carbohydrate, and a fruit or a vegetable at each meal. It is including ALL foods and having no foods off limits. It is eating tacos, kale, pizza, drinking smoothies, and eating ice cream. It is utilizing the hunger-fullness scale- eating when you are hungry and stopping when you are full.

17991110_859686347505248_1819965163520750607_n.jpg

ice cream

For me, healthy movement is movement that is enjoyable. It is movement that does not feel scheduled. It is movement that feels good to your body. It is movement that you do not do if your body feels exhausted. It is movement that is not compulsatory-  as in “well I ate this so I need to run.” I think in today’s society it is honored if you work out every day for 3 hours, when really, this is an issue and not healthy at all. Movement for me right now looks like running, strength training, and yoga, all the while listening to my body and finding what feels good to my body.

Someone who is suffering with an eating disorder most of the time is fixated on food, body image, and exercise, so as an eating disorder dietitian, I often get questions from my patients about how often I work out, what I do, and what I eat. This is my explanation to them. I do not provide in depth details because what I do often changes, and I have learned that is normal. If you eat the same thing and move your body in the same way for a long period of time, you are most likely obsessed with your weight and that is not healthy at all.

img_8351113620734_1350536731626342_7750636918007358784_n13887117_1375814652431883_7482900269243272200_n14141634_1396935573653124_8174029756283109283_n

Right now during my commutes to work and during runs, I have been loving podcasts. My faves right now are RD Real Talk-Registered Dietitians Keeping It Real, The Way Your Are Project, The Everyday Woman Podcast, and Food Psych. I recently listened The Everyday Woman Podcast that Kylie was on, and she discussed how for her it was so healing for her to be around her husband because he had such a great relationship with food and movement. I could totally resonate with that. I remember going to Tulsa, Oklahoma for my sports nutrition internship (almost a year ago, how crazy is that?) and being around Matt my soon to be boyfriend (little did I know). The more I was around Matt, the more I observed his great relationship with food and movement (and charming sense of humor, and good looks too.. Hi Matt!). I remember going to the gym with him to get
“swole” as he called it and being there for like 40 minutes and inside my head I was like “wow, that was it?” But it was so great for me to see that working out does not have to take 2 hours. It does not have to be this grueling process. He also had such a great relationship with food that was so great for me to see. Most of our first dates were going to get tacos and ice cream. Tacos are life, right?

Amongst all the diet info right now, I had to share with you what healthy eating and movement means to me. I hope that you found this to be helpful. As always, if you are struggling with an eating disorder or disordered eating, please seek help!

 

Would love to hear your feedback!

 

Whit

 

 

 

Iced coffee vs. cold brew coffee

IMG_0331[1].JPGFor a while I thought blogging was not my thing anymore or I just didn’t feel led to do it anymore. I think I was burnt out and also super busy getting used to adulating with two part time jobs. Now that things have been pretty comfortable, I have started to miss blogging. I should be waiting for God to shake things up again. That is what normally happens when we get comfortable. I’ve been LOVING Life.Church New Overcomer Series. We get comfortable and almost numb to what is going on around us when God is calling us to get UNCOMFORTABLE and I have started praying for that since listening to this message last week. He has called us to be overcomers and that is pretty awesome when you think about it.

Anyway, anyone tried cold brew coffee? I am a huge coffee drinker and if you have read my blog in the past, you know that. I go to coffee shops much less than I used to, roughly 1-2 times a week. (Shout out to Dave Ramsey, I am saving some cash!)  I love a good iced coffee drink, so since cold brew coffee was the latest thing in the coffee world I had to try it. Since cold brew coffee has a stronger taste, I loved it. I love STRONG coffee. Matt makes kind of weak coffee and I have had to train him to make stronger coffee. I love you Matt, but I also love strong coffee. 🙂

Since cold brew coffee is the latest thing, of course there are health claims around it, but are those actually true? Google cold brew and a ton of articles come up, with no science behind them of course. There are claims that it is better for the stomach since it is 1/3 less acidic than normal coffee which makes it less alkaline. While this may be true, does that mean it is any healthier? Probably not. The body knows how to process and function at a more or less alkaline state.

Obviously the brewing technique is different in cold brew coffee, but I had no idea that there was any food science differences in it, until one of my clients at IFITT24 brought it up. I would identify this client and his wife as coffee snobs like myself who love strong coffee. They crack me up. Anytime that I give them some type of oatmeal or breakfast recipe to try they say “This would be good with a cup of coffee.” Love them! 🙂 They had experienced their cholesterol slightly elevated when they got labs done and tried to get to the bottom of it before they met with me. The client found out the way he was brewing his coffee- without a filter- could slightly elevate cholesterol. I had never heard of this so I told him I would do some research.

The verdict? More research needs to be done! Go figure since cold brew coffee and French press coffee are a new thing. Coffee does not contain cholesterol. It is actually chock full of antioxidants. However, there is a compound, cafestol, found in coffee, that does elevate cholesterol. When the coffee is not filtered as in the cold brew and French press process, the compound is left in the coffee, thus possibly elevating LDL (cholesterol levels.

Since more research needs to be done, consume in moderation. Unless you are drinking several cups of unfiltered coffee every day, I don’t think there is much concern, or if you are going to your local coffee shop or Starbucks and once or twice a week getting a cold brew or French press coffee.

 

However, price point at the grocery store or Target (spoken in fancy French accent), purchasing iced coffee vs. cold brew is much better on your wallet. Looking to make your own iced coffee drink at home? Iced coffee instead of cold brew coffee may be your best bet. Of course you could always brew your own filtered coffee and refrigerate. 🙂

IMG_0315[1].JPGIMG_0314[1].JPG

My approach to healthy eating is based on intuitive eating which is the concept that all foods fit including cold brew and French press coffee. 🙂

Looking for a simple iced coffee recipe? Check out the one below!

IMG_0333[1].JPG

 

Ingredients:

1 cup iced coffee

1/2 cup milk of choice

splash of coffee creamer – I’ve been really loving Natural Bliss coffee creamer when I do use creamer!

Directions:

Mix! Adjust to your taste of course! 🙂

Have you had cold brew coffee? What’s your opinion of all the hype?

Whit

 

 

 

Working out through the winter blues

If you live in West Virginia then you are probably experiencing a lot of snow right now. While I love the snow, I absolutely hate driving in it.  I live pretty far out and the roads get bad where I live so if I do not have to be anywhere I just stay home. Today marks day 2 of staying at home. I think I am starting to get a little cabin fever, and I am missing access to a gym. If this is you too then I have some tips to share with you!

There are a few websites that offer FREE workout and yoga videos. I know nothing is free right?! Wrong. I often do these videos if I can’t get to the yoga studio or the gym. Neither of these videos requires equipment which is great if you’re like me and only have two sets of light weight dumb bells, yoga matt, and a foam roller.

 

IMG_8567[1].PNG

If you do have a foam roller, I do suggest rolling your quads, hamstrings, and your back to get your body warmed up. I normally do a ten-fifteen minute warm up with different stretches and use the foam roller before working out at the gym. Before dating Matt, I never warmed up before working out, and now that I do I can definitely feel a difference. Warming up gets your muscles warm and prevents you from getting a possible injury. Plus it never felt good for my body to just go into the gym and start working out right away, but I never knew any different.

IMG_7111[1].JPG

(Oh hey sock tan from Oklahoma.. sports nutrition problems. Obviously this is not a recent picture.. )

If you don’t have a foam roller, and have a tennis ball lying around you can also use that to warm up. Roll it under your glutes and hamstrings about five to ten passes. Warning: This may hurt but it is warming up your muscles preparing them for more pain in the workout.. No pain no gain.

I even normally take a ball with me to yoga so if you go to Yoga Power in Charleston, I am that girl who is rolling the ball on her legs and glutes before a yoga class.

Yoga with Adriene: Adriene offers a variety of yoga videos for free on her website. (Check out the FREE yoga revolution.. There is still time to join!) I love her approach to yoga in that she says that she doesn’t “Do yoga.” I think that that is a misconception about yoga. If you have never done yoga before you may think “Oh that is not a good workout.. you’re just sitting there.” Yoga is so much more than a workout. Yoga is about connecting to your body as a whole. Yoga helps me connect to myself and assess how I am feeling that day. Also, yoga is pretty challenging once you get to the harder poses which is why I am so thankful for the awesome teachers at Yoga Power who take the time to focus on each student. Yoga works your whole body in ways that other workouts can’t which I love.

IMG_8595[1].JPG

In this society, I think we forget to actually check in with ourselves and see how we are doing. While I began my yoga practice at Brown Dog Yoga last year while I was doing my Dietetic Internship/Master’s Degree, I think I am just now appreciating yoga. I read this blog about self care not too long ago and yoga is definitely a part of my self care, along with reading my Bible, weekly dinner dates with Matt (yes we have dinner dates on FaceTime), doing workouts that make my body feel good, and coffee dates with friends.

IMG_8351[1].JPG

IMG_8596[1].JPG

I urge you to take time for yourself and perform self care.

Blogilates: I remember first finding this website back in undergrad with my friend Jenna and we would do ab workouts from this website in my living room of my apartment. My roommate’s boyfriend at the time would walk in and look at us very strangely. Anyway, I love this website because Cassie’s workouts are super challenging, but only take 30 minutes! She does a lot of HIIT style workouts which I love, and she explains the moves pretty thoroughly. While some of her videos and challenges do cost money, most of them are free!

Well, I am off to warm up and then do this workout on Blogilates and work on a project that I am very excited about. More details on that later!

Stay warm.

Whit

 

 

Hazelnut Breakfast Smoothie

First off, I hope you all had a Merry Christmas and have a wonderful New Year!

I cannot believe today is New Years Eve. This year has really flown by! Although I am not much on resolutions, I do really like New Years because it is the starting of a new year and so much can happen in a new year and I just think that is really exciting. So many new experiences and opportunities that God has for you!

And with that, I have a new breakfast idea for you! Lately I have been all about oatmeal. I get stuck in breakfast ruts sometimes which is why I wrote this post a few weeks back. A while ago I was all about a green smoothie for breakfast and then I got really tired of them. And then it seemed when I lived in Oklahoma all I wanted to eat was waffles + pb + fruit, and then Matt got me on the egg train.

So anyway, if you are in a breakfast rut like me try this smoothie out. Yes, it has Nutella. I love Nutella. In this blog post, Kylie talks about how Nutella is a feared food for a lot of her eating disorder patients.

“I feel like Nutella is something clients constantly tell me they can’t keep it in their home because they will eat all of it very quickly.  The thing is…if you keep Nutella in your house and eat it when you have cravings for it, you don’t eat all of it at once with a spoon while standing up in your kitchen.  You just need to incorporate it in regularly to your meals and snacks and stop restricting yourself from it.”

While I have yet to have a patient/client who Nutella is a feared food, I have had clients who often fear foods that have sugar in them like cake, cookies, things like that. I preach the concept of intuitive eating because intuitive eating works. Listening to your body and what you are craving is crucial to having a good relationship with food. Have I always done this? No.. I think it is clear in this post that I was on a very scary ledge of an eating disorder. Glad I backed up from that ledge my friend.. If you didn’t get that song reference, I’m not sure that we can be friends. In all seriousness, it was the grace of God that I didn’t spiral down a scary path of an eating disorder.

Now today I get to help people who struggle with eating disorders, or are on the edge of eating disorders. I am truly blessed that God has given me this job. One thing that has remained constant in this job is that every day I learn more and more that our society is so confused about what healthy really is. I read this post the other day and totally related. Our society tells us that eating food that we don’t even like or doing exercises that don’t feel good to our bodies and that we don’t even enjoy is healthy.

While I am all about incorporating whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean protein in the diet, I am also all about listening to your body which is a concept I think our society has long forgotten about. If I am craving chocolate, I eat chocolate. If I am craving tacos, I eat tacos. The diet mentality in our culture tells us chocolate is bad and that we shouldn’t eat it. I go by the concept that every food fits and listening to our bodies, utilizing the hunger fullness scale. When you are sitting down to eat, ask yourself “Okay, how hungry am I?” Eating until your full and satisfied (a 7), and not until you are Thanksgiving full (a 10). Sometimes I eat until (a 8) because I am really enjoying a food and that is okay. Also, not waiting until you feel like you are going to faint to eat (a 1) and then eating everything in sight (a 10).

Image result for hunger fullness scale

Wanna know more about intuitive eating? Check out this wonderful book. Do you think that you need to work on your relationship with food? Please seek help! If you are in the Charleston, WV area, myself and the other wonderful people at DECC would love to help you!

Hazelnut Breakfast Smoothie

IMG_8557[1].JPG

Ingredients:

1/2 cup almond milk or milk of choice

1/4 cup oats

2 tablespoons Nutella

1/2 scoop protein powder (both vanilla and chocolate are great in this)

1/2 banana

2 large handfuls of ice

Directions:

Add all ingredients and blend away. This is a thick smoothie which is my favorite! If you would it thinner, add more milk and less ice!

 

 

A Breakfast Idea

Hey guys,

I know it’s been a long time since I have wrote a blog. Life has been a little crazy since moving back to West Virginia. From job interview after job interview and feeling like I would never find a job that I wanted or a job that wanted me. It seemed that every job I wanted was a job that ended up hiring for someone with more experience. After failing the RD exam I remember calling Matt and saying that I didn’t even know if I was supposed to be a RD anymore.

I wasn’t fully trusting God with my job or the RD exam, and when I did that is when everything changed. I passed the RD exam. I remember going to my fifth job interview and saying “Okay God, I’ll just be myself and I’m trusting you with this.” I was offered the job a day later as an outpatient eating disorder dietitian, and I truly feel blessed to have this job. No it’s not a sports RD job, but working with eating disorders will prepare me for that later on down the road. God knows that clinical dietetics is not for me and I believe that is one of the reasons why He placed me where He did. Last week I had my first clients/patients and while I know that some will be challenging(I may or may not have already had a taste of that), I truly enjoyed it and left feeling beyond blessed. I really felt like I made a difference and there is no better feeling than that.

Motivational Quote:  Don't waste it!  Follow: https://www.pinterest.com/DAR_Centers/:

So what does all that have to do with breakfast ideas? Well one blog I read is http://www.immaeatthat.com who is also an eating disorder dietitian. I love reading her blog for recipes and also methods and strategies for working with clients.

Whether your starting a new job or still in college, these breakfast recipes can help you be more prepared throughout the week. All of these are make-ahead recipes except the last recipe.

Epic No-Bake Pumpkin Peanut Butter Filled Oat Bars

Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal

Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Baked Oatmeal

Single-Serving Breakfast Bread Pudding

Oatmeal Dough: This recipe was featured on her Instagram, but not her blog. I love making a few of these for the week. Matt loves it too, but he sprinkles PB2 in his for some extra protein.

IMG_7817[1].PNG

Eggs + Toast + Green Smoothie: You scramble two eggs, put it on some toast. Whip up  green smoothie of banana, ice, almond milk, and spinach. Love this breakfast because you have sweet and savory for those mornings when you are indecisive if you want a sweet or a savory breakfast.

img_82191

 

 

 

Hope you all try some of these! 🙂

Whit

TU Sports Nutrition Internship

So I’ve been meaning to write this blog since 2 weeks after the internship had started. I have been crazy busy though, so that did not happen.. and well, I guess now I can write about the full experience as a whole.

I cannot say enough how great this experience was for me and how blessed I am that God gave me this opportunity. My dad flew in Friday and on Saturday my dad, Matt, and I moved everything out of my apartment, had breakfast, and then we left.

IMG_7063[1].JPG

I can now say that I am so happy to be home. However, on Saturday, while I was so excited to see my family and friends in WV, half of my heart was still in Oklahoma. Tulsa, Oklahoma was the first place I was truly on my own 14.5 hours away from home and not knowing a single person when I moved here. It’s a place where I fell in love with sports nutrition and God solidified with me that this is what I am supposed to be doing for His glory.. I have been called to Sports Dietetics. However, the most unexpected thing that happened when I was in Tulsa was that I fell in love. Going home was very bittersweet for me.

So what did I do 12 hours a day during my sports nutrition internship? During my time at TU we were on 3 different schedules.

The first schedule was the summer training and conditioning schedule. During this schedule my roommate LaReine and I would roll out of bed at 4:00 A.M., get dressed, throw our hair in a bun, throw down breakfast and get to TU at 5:00 A.M.

LaReine left 2.5 weeks after I got to Tulsa. She had already been at TU for a month and she showed me the swing of things before she left and we watched way too many Friends episodes.

LaReine, Matt, and I would set up breakfast for the football team before heading out to go to the warm out on the field where we met up with the Sports RD Annie to hydrate the players.

IMG_6865[1].JPG

IMG_6862[1].JPG

IMG_6861[1].JPG

Set up included cereals, oatmeal, waffles, bagels, fresh fruit, granola bars, yogurt, etc. All of these were available to make a balanced breakfast for the players. Especially if a few of the players did not like what was catered a balanced breakfast of carbs and protein (and fruit!) could still be made with these options. Plus these football players eat A LOT.. I’m talking some need 4,000 calories A LOT. After that the football team would have a lift in the weight room and one of us would go grab the breakfast from where Annie catered it from that morning.

IMG_6762[1].JPGWe also made 1,000 PB&J’s and cut up fresh fruit on the regular. If anyone asks how Matt and I got together we always say we fell in love over making PB&J’s – How many people can say that?

Some other regular duties were..

  • Making protein shakes after other team’s workouts
  • Doing recovery after the football players lift (a supplement that replenishes both carbohydrate and protein)
  • Cleaning
  • Dring the day when we had down time we had time to work out and use the awesome facility at TU. I learned a lot about lifting from LaReine and Matt while I was at TU.
  • Sam’s Club trips (People always asked why we were buying so much food.. every single time)
  • Taking snacks to the locker room

I feel like there should be some type of disclaimer when you do a sports nutrition internship at a smaller school.. You must know how to balance multiple objects on carts and dollies.

Matt and I joked that the internship would make a great video game.

IMG_6834[1].PNG

Football camp started which was a completely different schedule. Football camp is exhausting for everyone that is involved, not only the athletes. Football camp is when 2-a-days start and weighing at breakfast and dinner to make sure that the players are eating enough and staying hydrated and not dropping weight like crazy. It is HOT in Oklahoma and thanks to football camp I had a nice tan when I returned to WV. During half time breaks of practice snacks were offered to the players such as fruit snacks, fruit cups, and fresh fruit. You may think- fruit snacks – that’s not “healthy.” Sports dietetics is a completely different ball game. Throw out the norm and definitely throw out that 0.8 grams protein per kg. These snacks are used because they provide a quick release of carbohydrate for energy.

I laugh because some people do not realize that Sports RD’s have to attend the practices of the teams that they work closely with. How else are they going to help the athletes? Their practices are typically when they do not feel like eating and drinking.. The sports RD is there saying here you NEED to drink/eat this. Something else provided during the practice is what is called “Salt” which is Gatorade with salt and potassium chloride. This replenishes them with what is lost threw their sweat.

During football camp at first the meals are done at the dining hall which Annie coordinated the meals for the dining hall so that they provided plenty of good options for the football team. The rest of the meals Annie has catered. I did not realize how Sports Dietetics was so similar to food service because you are provided with a budget and have to serve a certain number of people while still providing a nutrient dense meal that the players will actually like.

I also got to sit in on a few one-on-ones and throw in my two cents.

Coaches can mandate their athletes to meet with the Sports RD if they have gained too much weight and it is effecting their performance, for example. However athletes can also schedule appointments with her on their own just for learning more about nutrition in general, or weight gain/weight loss.

She normally covers protein, carb, fruit/veggie – basics of sports nutrition.. However, if the athlete has had experience with a meal plan before she may ask more broad questions.

For example, one athlete had a trainer do a meal plan/workout plan prior to coming to TU. However, the athlete had gained weight after coming to TU and was seeking Annie’s guidance.

She used the plate method 3 larger meals with 3 snacks.. focusing on snacks filled with protein for weight loss. One thing that she emphasized was including carbohydrate at meals. The athlete was a football player and the diet that the trainer had him on did not include carbohydrates. She explained to him that this was okay for the certain time period because the trainer was doing it for weight loss. However, the player would not be able to sustain the lifts and practices there at TU without carbohydrates.

The third schedule was my last week at TU when school had started back up. I will say that I have a new appreciation for college athletes because the football team had lift that morning, went to class, then had practice, and some even had class after practice. I do not know if I could do that. This is one of the reasons why the role of the Sports RD is so important. Athletes skipping meals could lead to weight loss and a decrease in their performance. Some of the athletes do not have breaks in their schedule. The weight room was always was stocked with fruit, pb&j’s and the option of a protein shake. For those who had class after practice we made sure that they were provided with a muscle milk, pb&j, something to take with them. No this is not ideal but sometimes life is not ideal and something is better than nothing!

IMG_6963[1].JPG

This experience taught me so much about sports nutrition. Yes I was tired every day but I loved every second of it. This experience caused me to be a much more confident person. At TU, 90% of the football players were the nicest people. However, there was the 10% that were not the nicest. There was an incident that occurred and Annie was proud of the way that I handled it. I am thankful for all of Annie’s constructive criticism and advice. I know that sometimes my downfall is that I’m too sweet and need to be more firm. Working with athletes is different than working with any other population in Dietetics. Through this experience I learned how to better communicate with them and to be more sure of myself and my abilities.

TU had the nicest coaches, strength staff and of course Sports RD (Hi Annie!). I truly miss everyone there.

So what is next?! While my dream job is to be a sports dietitian one day, that time may not be now. I am thankful to be back in WV with my family and  friends and hope to find a job here for now. Praying and trusting in God’s plan for my life one step at a time..

Master’s Degree accomplished..

14211930_1392661547413860_2671183987845541279_n.jpg

Special thanks to the Coffee House on Cherry Street for fueling my studying with iced latte’s and gluten-free cookies.

IMG_6859[1].JPG

.. now for the RD exam!

Interested in Sports Dietetics? I would be happy to talk to you more in detail about my experience. 🙂

Whit

 

What’s on my heart [7/2/16]

Never touch anything with half of your heart.:

I tried to figure out a title for this blog, but nothing came to mind. This week has been an emotional whirlwind for a couple reasons. I cannot believe I finished my dietetic internship and on Thursday I’ll be leaving for Oklahoma for my sports nutrition internship. It just doesn’t all feel real quite yet. Something else happened this week too.

If you’re reading this blog right now and you’ve ever been hurt  or let down by someone or something, raise your hand. Now obviously I cannot see your hand raised, but I’m sure this has happened to everyone reading this at some point. In fact an exact moment or situation might come to mind and all of those feelings may start flooding back in. It does not feel good to be hurt or let down. Not at all. You may be upset then you may be angry and then you may feel just fine. If you’re like me you cry, then you want to punch a punching bag at the gym, then you feel fine. It’s a cycle.

God has gave me peace about the situation and I am so glad I can rest in Him.

I believe God puts us in these situations to use them for our good for our growth. I also believe that we are planted in people’s lives for a reason. I had told a friend recently that I planted a seed in the person’s life. My friend explained to me that seeds are a beautiful thing and when we plant them they can grow into something later on down the road. The people we plant seeds in will never forget it either. However, sometimes it is hard to see that when you are in the situation and your wounds feel so raw.  You may wonder “How is God going to use this for my good?”

I was talking to my mom this morning saying that sometimes I wish I was a mean person and did not have such a big heart. She said “Yeah, but you could not make much of an impact then would you? How much of a witness would you be then?” She’s right. It would be easier to go through life without a heart, but that is not how He created us.

Love is a wonderful thing. God loves us more than we can imagine, and how awful would it be if we could not love Him back? He has gave us this life to love him and pursue Him with all we’ve got!

A song I cannot get out of my head lately has been ‘Chain Breaker” by Zach Williams.

If you’re been walking the same old road for miles and miles
If you’ve been hearing the same old voice tell the same old lies
If you’re trying to fill the same old holes inside
There’s a better life, there’s a better life

If you’ve got pain, He’s a pain taker
If you feel lost, He’s a way maker
If you need freedom or saving, He’s a prison-shaking Savior
If you got chains, He’s a chain breaker

We’ve all searched for the light of day in the dead of night
We’ve all found ourselves worn out from the same old fight
We’ve all run to things we know just ain’t right
When there’s a better life, there’s a better life

If you’ve got pain, He’s a pain taker
If you feel lost, He’s a way maker
If you need freedom or saving, He’s a prison-shaking Savior
If you got chains, He’s a chain breaker

If you believe it, if you receive it
If you can feel it, somebody testify
If you believe it, if you receive it
If you can feel it, somebody testify, testiify
If you believe it, if you receive it
If you can feel it, somebody testify

If you’ve got pain, He’s a pain taker
If you feel lost, He’s a way maker
If you need freedom or saving, He’s a prison-shaking Savior
If you got chains, He’s a chain breaker

If you need freedom or saving, He’s a prison-shaking Savior
If you got chains, He’s a chain breaker

I think this song applies to anywhere you’re at with your walk with The Lord.

Right now, the part where God being a pain taker applies to me. So thankful God can take away the pain and heal my heart.

So I will continue to press on and stay true to myself with my big old heart that God has gave me. I will also continue to pray for that person. I believe He’s made me the way I am for a reason with my big old heart. My purpose is so big..so much bigger than I can see right now. God is in everything we do. We just have to trust Him.

And boy, will I ever be trusting Him more than I ever have before being 15 1/2 hours away from good old West by God Virginia.

 

God has a mission for me. Watch out Oklahoma, I’m coming for you soon!

Whit

 

 

 

Don’t forget to take care of yourself.

If you’re my friend on facebook or Instagram, you’ve probably seen this picture.

injured

If not, I’ll give you the low down. Once a week I have been going to the HIT Center for a bootcamp class taught by my friend Brittney. I love this class because it gives me a good sweat. Brittney focuses on metabolic conditioning and whole body strength training in an hour. My friend Emily and I always feel like we might die but we always make it through and feel awesome afterwards.

So this Thursday Emily and I went to class as usual. It was 40 minutes into the class when I fell. Brittney had half of the class outside and the other half inside and then we would switch after three rounds. I was running on the turf and tripped. I fell face forward and had turf in my teeth, my gums were bleeding, and my face and shoulder were scuffed up pretty badly. I did have tears in my eyes because it was burning so bad but I could not help but laugh that it happened. Brittney rushed over with an ice pack and set me in front of the fan to cool down and Emily helped wipe off all of my blood.

So why am I telling you this story? Because probably for the past two weeks or so I have not been sleeping enough. In fact, the night before this happened I was studying for my practice RD exam. Right now I am in the last class of my Master’s Degree which requires you to pass the practice RD exam with a 80% or higher, or you don’t pass the class. Yes, that’s a thing. Next Friday is the final time I am able to take the exam

My dad said “You really should get some sleep” before he headed off to bed. I replied being the stubborn 20 something that I am “Dad, I’m fine.”

Dad was right. I needed sleep. I needed to slow down a bit and breathe. Staying up until 11 or 11:30 may not seem like a big deal to some but when you wake up at 5:30 every morning and spend 2 hours commuting every day  to a 8 hour internship while still studying and exercising when you can in the evening  it is pretty late.

Now am I saying this would have not happened if I was not so drained?  Probably not. However,  I truly think everything happens for a reason and I think this happened to make me see that I do need to slow down some. It made me realize I need sleep and I can’t do everything all the time. Like Brittney said, exercise will be there when I pass the exam.

I always preach to everyone to get plenty of sleep at night and I had not been practicing what I preach. I recently read this blog post about self-care and I think it is spot on.

At the beginning of the blog post she says “I spent so long feeling like if I wasn’t miserable in life, then I wasn’t working hard enough.  I’m so over that and all about the self-care now.”

That spoke volumes to my current situation. I think sometimes we get so busy trying to do everything that we forget about the things that are important to us. I feel like the past 2 weeks I’ve also not spent enough time with God and that is definitely number one on my self care list. I’m sure thankful He has not forgotten about me and is always there. I know He has brought me this far and He won’t leave me now.

Although I have been wondering where I am going to be at in the future as far as jobs go, I should not doubt. He is in control.

While my back and neck are pretty sore, my face is starting to heal. My fall could have been a lot worse and I know God was watching over me.

I heard this song by Unspoken on the radio Thursday night on my way home and smiled.

You brought me this far
So why would I question You now
You have provided
So why would I start to doubt
I’ve never been stranded, abandoned
Or left here to fight alone
So I’m giving You control

I lift my life, lift my life up
I give it all in surrender
I lift my heart, lift my heart up
You can have it forever
All my dreams, all my plans
Lord, I leave it in Your hands
I lift my life, lift my life up
Have Your way in me
Have Your way in me

If peace is a river let it sweep over me
If I’m under fire I know it’s refining me
When I hear You calling out I follow now
Wherever the road may go
I know You’re leading me home

God kept me safe and He has big plans for me.  I believe if I put Him first He will take care of me in all aspects of my life.

So as of now I am taking a week off from the gym and focusing on self care, getting enough sleep, and studying. Truly being in the moment instead of being drained and letting life pass me by.

Happy Saturday you guys,

Whit