Category Archives: Training

Weekly Nutrition Tip September 14, 2013

Caffeine has become a hot topic these days; a topic that kind of comes and goes.

SCAN (the dietetic practice group for sports nutrition) just put out these recommendations:

Caffeine and Athletic Performance

Potential Benefits:

• There is evidence that caffeine may enhance performance in endurance
athletes (e.g. cyclists, runners, swimmers and rowers) and speed
endurance athletes (e.g. mid-distance runners, and soccer, rugby and
hockey players).

• Caffeine does not appear to increase weight loss but may delay fatigue
and improve mental sharpness.

Potential Risks:

• Side effects include: anxiety, jitteriness, rapid heartbeat, upset stomach, and insomnia.

• Caffeine is an addictive substance. Tolerance may minimize benefits, and withdrawal symptoms can negatively impact performance.

• Caffeine, in high amounts (>15 ug/mL in the urine), is a banned substance by the NCAA. For most individuals, more than 500mg right before competition may result in a positive test.

Strategies for Caffeine Consumers:

• Timing: ~1 hour pre-competition, but practice during training first

• Amount: Tolerance depends on the individual, but 2 – 6 mg/kg body
weight (no more than 9 mg/kg) is adequate.

• Type: Researchers suggest that caffeine, in pill form, may be more
effective than drinking coffee and is better tolerated.

Caffeine Source Amount (mg)
Brewed Coffee (8 oz.) 60 – 150
Energy Drinks / Energy Bars (varies depending on size & brand) 80 – 200+
Pills (1 tablet) 100
Soda / Tea (8 oz.) 40 – 60

Athlete Scenario
One athlete reports:
I usually have a couple of cups of coffee before my long
bike rides. My riding partners swear that caffeine gives them
a competitive edge and tell me that I should be consuming
more. Is all of the hype about caffeine true, and if so, how
much is safe?

Caffeine and Athlete Performance
Tips to Take With You

1. Know what you’re putting in your body.
Some caffeine-containing products may have additional additives that could impair performance.

2. In moderation, caffeine does not cause dehydration or electrolyte imbalance, but athletes should rely on non-caffeinated beverages when rapid hydration is necessary.

3. Meet with a sports RD to determine if caffeine is appropriate for you. (That’s me! )
Contact SCAN
© 2013 Sports, Cardiovascular, and Wellness Nutrition (SCAN) Photo Credit: ©

We would love to know what your thoughts are on caffeine and your perfomance.
Email me at

Metabolic Efficiency Training

I am soooo excited!  Just returned from Denver, where I attended the Metabolic Efficiency Training Workshop  developed, created and taught by the expert Bob Seebohar, MS, RD, CSSD, CSCS.

Metabolic Efficiency, for athletes, is simply a way to teach our bodies to burn more fat and less carbohydrates!  The bottom line is that we will conserve carbohydrates, requiring less intake and, therefore,  reducing the likelihood of GI distress!

Ever had GI distress on a swim, bike or run??? Chances are you have! so…read on…

I will be testing this new way of eating on myself, and then teaching it to my athletes. It only seems right that I can teach not only the principles involved, but personal experience also.

Interested in learning more about MET?  Of course, you are 🙂
Check out Bob’s work at http://

Let us know what you think!

Metabolic Efficiency works!

We are in Chicago (actually Plainfield) with our kids, grandson and their new puppy for a few days. I decided to test my metabolic efficiency plan.

Had one piece of pizza for lunch; tried to run, a slug on the trail beat me!

Had a pear and a handful of sunflower seeds this morning.  Ran the same route and beat my own PB!!!  Am I going to stay on M.E.T?  Well, as my grandchildren would say, “that’s a real DUH-H-H.”


Metabolic Efficiency Training, con’t

I LOVE being Metabolically Efficient!!!!  The food plan is simple, and I find that I am not missing the starches as I thought I would.

My trainer, Jeff, measures my body comp every Tuesday morning.  In the one week plus a few days, I lost six pounds of body fat!  Truthfully, we are not certain that is accurate, so we will retest next Tuesday for verification.  Stay tuned.

Have YOU checked out Metabolic Efficiency Training yet?  My sports dietitian, Dina Griffin MS, RD, CSSD has been tremendously helpful.  Check out for more help.

Walk (run?) with me on this journey.

Will you?  Please?  Thanks!!!