April 9, 2019

It is quite a challenge to fit in Triathlon training as a physician. Figuring out and executing the 4th discipline on top of that is a whole new level of challenge. Sherry Rowland, a decade long competitor in triathlon and IM finisher, is still working on refining that and feels she is on the edge of that solution with the help of OWN Nutrition services. 

Sherry currently competes in the 55-59 age bracket. In peak training he manages to train 16-20 hours a week on top of her duties as a Slidell Memorial Pediatric Physician. With little free time beyond career and endurance sports pursuits, it is no wonder she sought expert help figuring out what may be the trickiest part of endurance training and racing.

On average, 2,400 calories a day works for “Doc” Rowland. She works a 40/20/40 ratio of Carbs/ Protein/ Fats due to an allergy to mammalian meat. She uses strict meal plans--no shock coming from someone who would need incredible discipline to pull off the balance of her career, family, and athletic pursuits. The difficulty meeting nutrition/ hydration during peak training while balancing family, and career obligations was a major obstacle. As a result, she turned to OWN Nutrition and Jessica Irgens to tackle the issue. 

Besides the time management issue of meal planning and execution, she was struggling to perfect nutrition for the longer IM training and events. “ I live in South Louisiana...the summer here is brutal. Getting in enough electrolytes and fluids is quite a challenge, says Dr. Rowland. During training she gets hungry 4 hrs in to a long day and adds “I lose as much as 5 lbs even with lots of hydration on a long day in the summer.” To address this issue and the fact that she is a Pescatarian she enlisted Jessica from OWN as her sport nutritionist and communicates at least weekly with her. 

She still feels she has some things to figure out now that she has completed an Ironman, but feels the light at the end of the tunnel is near as a result of these resources. Doc Rowland has been using OWN-Nutrition for the past almost 2 years because they are specific to endurance athlete. Each week “I send a guideline of what my upcoming week will be for workouts, what foods worked, how I am feeling, what I have in my pantry/frig.I get back a weekly meal plan that includes recipes, a shopping list, and nutritional break down.” Her fluids of choice are personal blends by Infinit. It goes without saying that this poster child for meticulous doesn’t leave any stone unturned.

That kind of  discipline does lend itself to a self reflective chuckle for Rowlandi . . . “Before my first Ironman, if I was in a room with a patient and my food alarm went off...I would come back to my computer with little notes stuck to it that said things like ‘are you hangry yet?’ ‘EAT before you get itchy’ ‘Drink that smoothie dammit’!”

. . . And what about race day . . . Pre race morning, one cup of coffee, overnight oats, banana, peanut butter, salt tab, 20 oz of water is the ritual. During the bike legshe consumes 20 oz of electrolytes/carbs fluids, 3 cliff blocks every hour. At 4 hrs and then every 2 hrs after that: add one honey stinger waffle. On the run  “I try not to die and grab things from aid stations. I love Coca Cola, bananas, oranges, potato chips.  The broth made me vomit”.  . . . yes we can all laugh in sympathy at that-- been their, done that!

Take it from Sherry if you haven’t got it figured out yet . . . her simple advice,: “Get a nutritionist and a nutrition analysis!” She adds, “Although people worry about the cost of the OWN nutrition program I spend less money on food than I did before I worked with OWN. I rarely get take out, my home cooked meals are delicious, and because the meal plans work with what is in the pantry and in season....food is not wasted.