Canadian Sport Instute

Taste Buds Workshops Bring Variety to Athletes’ Lives

CSICalgary-TasteBuds-8914If there is one thing that world-class athletes from sports such as bobsleigh, wrestling, hockey, and athletics all have in common it is their love of eating! Fortunately, athletes at the Canadian Sport Institute Calgary are becoming more versed in healthy habits and menus through the Taste Buds workshop series, one of the many Life Services programs offered by the Institute's experts.

Performance Dietitians Kelly Anne Erdman and Kelly Drager began the Taste Buds series over the summer of 2014, allowing for athletes to gather over the lunch hour to prepare new, healthy meals and recover after strenuous workouts. Erdman says the team "ran the Taste Bud series over the summer with several goals in mind. It was a teaching opportunity as Performance Dietitians as well as an opportunity for athletes to help prepare and enjoy a wholesome, quick meal. On most occasions they also left with extra meals! And let's not forget the opportunity for athletes from different sports to mix."

The series kicked off by teaching the athletes how to prepare a well-rounded meal perfect for their busiest days, Slow Cooker Beef made with sweet potatoes and apples. During the second workshop, athletes were treated to a summer flare menu, which included a protein rich recipe of tuna salad accompanied by a fruit medley. Apart from being provided lunch and new meal ideas, athletes in attendance were taught expert cooking tips and left every workshop with new recipes in hand.

Wrestler Erica Wiebe, bobsleigh athlete Chris Spring, hockey players Haley Irwin and Hayleigh Cudmore, and track athlete Sam Effah gathered for lunch during the third Taste Buds workshop to learn new tricks from Performance Dietitian Kelly Drager. Knowing that athletes need a significantly higher carbohydrate intake than the average person, Kelly's aim for the lunch hour was to teach athletes how to use a variety of whole grains in their diet, instead of the typical athlete choices of rice or quinoa. Creating two carbohydrate based meals, Polenta with Zucchini Salsa and Sushi Rolls made with millet instead of rice, the athletes all left the session full and happy, with exciting new ideas for their new carbohydrate options.

The positive response to the Taste Buds Series has served as a catalyst for the newest feature on the Canadian Sport Institute Calgary's Facebook page. In order to add new flavours and ideas to everyone's meal plans, Weekly Recipes are posted every Friday from a variety of sources including the Performance Dietitians, athletes, and Canadian Sport Institute staff members. By having continued access to shared knowledge such as recipes and tips, athletes can continue to broaden their culinary horizons, while continuing along their paths in pursuit of sports excellence.

Be sure to check out the Canadian Sport Institute Calgary's Facebook page every Friday for new recipe ideas!

Stay in the loop!

Canadian Sport Institute Calgary: @csicalgary
Written by Brittany Schussler: @bschussler
Photo by Dave Holland @csicalgaryphoto
Facebook Page for Weekly Recipes: https://www.facebook.com/CSIalgary