Future RD, trying to follow God's plan for my life one day at a time

Working out through the winter blues — January 6, 2017

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.



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.


(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.


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.



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.




Hazelnut Breakfast Smoothie — December 31, 2016

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



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


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 — November 26, 2016

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.


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.





Hope you all try some of these! 🙂


TU Sports Nutrition Internship — September 2, 2016

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.


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.




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.


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!


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..


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


.. now for the RD exam!

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



What’s on my heart [7/2/16] — July 2, 2016

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!





Don’t forget to take care of yourself. — June 11, 2016

Don’t forget to take care of yourself.

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

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,


Cold Blaster Smoothie — May 21, 2016

Cold Blaster Smoothie

As I’m typing this blog, I am watching The Kitchen with my mom which is our Saturday routine when I’m home on Saturday mornings. We are obsessed. Anyone who knows me knows I’m obsessed with Katie Lee who is on the show that’s from WV. Last spring when I got to meet her at her cookbook signing my life was made.

While I’m watching and typing this blog I’m also figuring out meals for the week and making my store list. One recipe includes this jerk chicken with some plantains. YUM.  I had to take a survey this morning as part of a job application and one of the questions was if I was good at multitasking – I checked strongly agree.

So the past week the weather has been so dreary in WV. A few days ago I woke up with a scratchy throat and stuffy nose. I felt like I needed a smoothie with a ton of nutrients to fight off the cold.  I had this smoothie for breakfast this morning and I think it’s going to turn into my go-to smoothie for a while. I go through phases with smoothies where I will drink the same one for like a month or two then switch off.


  • 2 tablespoons almond butter – I’ve had an obsession with this brand lately ever since purchasing it at Marshalls. I normally buy Kroger or Aldi natural almond butter, but this brand is so smooth. It’s ruined my baller on a budget tendencies.
  • 2 large handfuls of spinach – about 2 cups
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 small frozen banana


Throw in you blender and blend until smooth. Sip up all those delicious tasting  nutrients.



IMG_6261[1].JPGI hope you try the smoothie!

Don’t forget to relax a little bit and enjoy your weekend!




Yes, I’ve gained ten pounds. — May 14, 2016

Yes, I’ve gained ten pounds.

November is the month that the St. Mary’s Marshall full and half marathon always falls on. November 2014 I weighed in at a low weight of 118 pounds. I had never weighed that much my whole college career at Marshall. November 2015 I weighed in at 128 pounds.

November2014 (first half marathon)

September 2015 (Charleston Distance Run- hilly 15 miler)

November 2015 (second half marathon)

November 2014 was the first half marathon I had ever ran. I trained with one of my friends Jenna for the race. We did all of our long runs together. My friend Heather who I go to church with ran the race as well.

That fall I was obsessed with training and being thin for the race to have a good race time. Honestly, I was not eating enough. I was even limiting portions of foods that I should be eating a ton of, fruits & veggies. I became obsessed with how much I was eating and the way I looked. I’m not sure if this was evident to people around me or not, but I do remember people making comments that I was “so tiny” and my dad always asking me if I wanted more vegetables than what I had put on my plate.

During this time I was a cardio fanatic, running and spinning was all I did except for one day a week I would do leg strength training with my boyfriend at the time. What am I saying? That cardio is bad? No. Not at all. But what I am saying is that for the amount of cardio I was doing, I definitely was not eating enough.

My time for the race was 2:01. I remember Jenna and I were so happy with that time. Our hard work had paid off. We split ways after the race and I ate with my family and boyfriend at the time. I remember not using gels or anything during the race. I ate a picky bar right after the race but that was it. I wanted to eat at Black Sheep for my post-race meal, but I went back to my apartment to shower before we headed over. The wait was so long for Black Sheep, or I at least remember it felt like it was so long. I felt so light headed and sick. I remember my mom telling me I looked really pale and needed to eat something. I ate my huevos rancheros so fast. My mom had made me cupcakes for doing my first half-marathon and I ate two I think. I remember the only thing I had the rest of the day was a banana and almond butter. I had oatmeal & pb for breakfast that morning. That’s it. I remember waking up the next morning starving too. (It’s funny that I remember everything I ate that day, but I can’t remember the names of all of the amino acids.)

Last spring I started to incorporate strength training into my workout routine and started eating more… or as much as I should be eating. I started listening to my body. If I was hungry I ate. I will never forget walking into Smithfit Training and Justin Smith, the owner and someone I had known from high school saying “You are so small.” I owe a lot of what I know about strength training to Justin and Katie Smith. They are the bomb.

In a culture that is so obsessed with image, it’s so important to be true to yourself and listen to your body.  Be yourself. Enjoy food. One of the RDN’s I’m with at my clinical 2 rotation always states that she “eats well.” I like that. Eating real whole foods 80% of the time, listening to your body when you are hungry and giving it what it needs. That 20% of course includes ice cream and chocolate, right?!

This week was hospital week at the hospital I’m doing my clinical 2 rotation at and throughout the week they offered different specials. Friday they offered free ice cream. After lunch you would find all of the RDN’s sitting in the office eating free ice cream. It would have been funny if an outpatient showed up at the office.

I think back to fall 2014 I probably would have turned down that ice cream. I am so thankful I now have a healthy relationship with food. After all food is something that should be enjoyed. There is nothing more than I love than cooking for family or friends and enjoying food together.

I think that sometimes we worry too much about our image. I found this quote some time ago and I really love it.

"We get so worried about being pretty. Let's be pretty kind. Pretty funny. Pretty smart. Pretty strong." - Anonymous #WWWQuotesToLiveBy:

I think that the “heavier” Whitney is a lot more happier. Is all that ten pounds muscle? No, but some of it is. Was my half marathon time better  or worse this year than the year before? No, it was right around the same time.

This event is one of the many reasons I want to go into sports nutrition and believe that God has called me to this field. So many athletes struggle with image issues and I want to help. Optimal nutrition = optimal performance.

I often remind myself of this Bible verse if I’m having one of those days when I don’t feel “pretty.”

Psalm 139:14 “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

The God of the universe made me. How awesome is it that He thought this world needed one of me, me, just the way that I am? A healthy, happy me.

Rest in knowing that God loves you just the way you are. Be you! After all, there is only one you.




You’re still that girl — May 5, 2016

You’re still that girl

The dietetic internship requires tons of driving. Radio stations play the same songs over and over again, so naturally I had to find some other tunes driving to Louisa, Kentucky an hour each day. I pulled out my old Britt Nicole CD (Yes, I still have CD’s!) and immediately started jamming Tuesday morning. I forgot how much I loved this CD, and one song in particular, “You’re still that girl.”

Dreams, they come
Plans, they change
Yea, we’re gonna break
Yea, we’re gonna break
Things we face make us who we are
Baby you’re a star shining in the dark
Let’s go back to the summer, summer when
We dreamed in love, let’s go back again
Let’s go back again
Yea, back again, my friend

To the summer when…
I’m holding a picture from seven years back
I smile at the memory, it’s smiling right back at me, and I see
Brown hair and bright eyes, such a beautiful blue
A heart full of laughter with nothing to lose
That’s how I remember you

You were young, you were free
And you dared to believe
You could be the girl
Who could change the world
Then your life took a turn
And you fell, and it hurt
But you’re still that girl
And you’re gonna change this world
Woh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl
Woh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl

Sometimes life don’t go the way you planned
And we all have days when we just don’t understand
Searching for meaning, it’s not always easy
But your story’s not over, it’s still being told
Your sunrise is coming brighter than gold
Let’s go back again
To the summer when

You were young, you were free
And you dared to believe
You could be the girl
Who could change the world
Then your life took a turn
And you fell, and it hurt
But you’re still that girl
And you’re gonna change this world
Woh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl
Woh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl

What if the picture is bigger than you see?
And God has you right where he wants you to be
Just listen to your heart
He’s telling you with every beat
[x3:] You’re still that girl

You were young you were free
And you dared to believe
You could be the girl
Who could change the world
Then your life took a turn
Don’t you know?
Don’t you see?
All you need is to believe
But you’re still that girl
And you’re gonna change this world
Woh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl
Woh oh oh oh oh oh
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl

I see it in your eyes
I see it in your smile
You’re still that girl
You’re still that girl

This song spoke volumes to me and I could feel God’s presence the rest of the way to Lousia. Sometimes I wonder what I look like when I drive because I’m always singing and dancing. People probably think I’m crazy, but that’s okay, I’m not normal and I’m okay with that.

This song brought me back to a time a few months ago that was the hardest time of my life for my family and I. My dreams of doing a sports nutrition internship were no longer in the picture. I thought I was meant to stay here in WV as close as I could be to my family. I was for sure of it. I felt as if I was settling on my dreams, but knew I wanted to be where my heart was. My heart was hurting. My heart is my family.

I think it’s funny how we sometimes think we know what God has planned then God’s like “hey, wait a second, I have something better in mind.”  God completely showed up on the scene and like I mentioned before, it was a miracle.

So what am I getting at in this post?! Don’t give up on your dreams. God’s got plans for you. When you are down to nothing He is definitely up to something. I am one of those people that DREAM BIG. I think we are meant to. I don’t believe that God will give you a dream that you are not meant to achieve.

God did not give us this life to be ordinary and frown all the time. I hate frowning. Smiling is my favorite. We were meant to dream and shine in the love that God has for us.

With God by my side, leading and guiding me every step, I’m still that girl who can change the world. This sports nutrition internship has me more excited than I have ever been for something as far back as I can remember. Planning living arrangements and talking to the other three interns has got me super pumped. Living by the river near cute coffee shops, being super busy, and chasing after a dream that all three of us have.

Am I scared? A little. Do I believe He has called me to do this? Yes.

Matthew 19:26: But with God all things are possible.

Phillipians 3:14 I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Don’t settle my friends. He’s got plans for you.

I feel so blessed and so full (of Black Sheep Tacos).

Looking tired & like a bum post-workout



Embracing the struggle — April 19, 2016

Embracing the struggle

As my final semester of graduate school comes to a close in May and the internship comes to a close on July 1, all I can say is wow, what a year it has been. I have never worked so hard or been so tired in my life. I have went through several battles throughout the year.

  1. a situation with my family that I had no idea why was happening and how God was going to fix it:  This year has definitely without a doubt been a heart wrenching year for my family, and while I won’t go into details I will say that GOD HAS WORKED A MIRACLE. I know that people question if miracles can still happen today, but I have seen first hand how God can take a life and a heart, heal it, and use it for His glory. With tears in my eyes as I am writing this, all I can say is God is amazing and I am beyond blessed. When my family and I were down to nothing, God was certainly up to something.13000070_1291544580858891_2663526916479867751_n
  2. not hearing back from any jobs: With grad school and the internship coming to a close, it was time to start applying for jobs. I applied for a few jobs near my house and never heard back from any of them. I had been praying about what the next step God wanted me to take, but had not gotten an answer yet.
  3. not getting into the internship I wanted: Anyone knows me knows that I love dietetics and anything that has to do with nutrition. It was not until recently I discovered what God has called me to do. Through networking at a nutrition conference last year, I worked with the sports dietitian at WVU and my internship director to set up the opportunity to go to Morgantown for a sports nutrition rotation as a part of my internship at Marshall. Through this experience, my eyes were opened to the world of sports nutrition and I fell in love. At the beginning of the internship when I was asked by professors/anyone else what I wanted to do I said I was not sure, but I liked outpatient and sports nutrition. Now if anyone asks me what I want to do, the answer is sports nutrition. I truly believe I have been called this aspect of the dietetics field. Sports nutrition internships are far and few between. Not having a lot of experience working with different teams, I did not know if I even had a shot at applying. I applied to two sports nutrition internships. I never heard back from one. I heard back from the other one which was at UK which is not too far from home. However, come to find out their internship was a graduate position, and at this point in my life, I am certainly not looking to get a second masters degree. I was discouraged at this point, but knew God had a plan, and if He wanted me to do this He would make a way. A sports nutrition internship position came open a few days later at University of Tulsa in Oklahoma, and after praying, I applied, thinking I would not get in, but it was worth a shot. Literally a few days later, I heard back. After interviewing on the phone, and skyping with the sports dietitian and strength coaches a few days later, I got a call saying I was a good fit and they wanted me for the position. With much prayer, I decided to take the position. Yes, this is scary since it is so far away from home, but I am beyond excited!!!! I will be starting July 6. Perfect timing with my dietetic internship ending July 1. Funny how that happened. And while I don’t know what the future holds for after Oklahoma, I know who holds it.

What am I saying? I am saying that while I may not be going through a “struggle” or “storm” now, I know that God is faithful to bring you out. Embrace it with a positive attitude. Fight with all you have for the Lord. Rely on Him as your strength and He will see you through. Smile knowing that God is in control.

And I am not talking about just the big things. There are no big things to God. Even things we think God may think are small or not important, but are big deals to us (like exams we have studied for hours but are still anxious about), He sees them as the same. He will help you finish the race, and stay the course.

2 Timothy 4:7

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

I have wanted to write this blog for a while, but God kept saying no. On my run today I felt like God was telling me today is the day to write it because someone needs it. I truly hope to help someone with this post. That’s why I started this blog, and even though I do not get to write in it as often as I would like, I hope to reach people.

Keep embracing the struggle, God will bring you out victorious!