Runners Promote Healthy Nutritional Habits

Amanda Young, Editor-in-Chief

Cross country runners freshman Ellie Buckley and juniors Sophie Webster and Sydney Roberts share recipes and dishes they’ve made on Instagram @xcfoodies, in hopes of inspiring other athletes to make healthy choices.

The account, which debuted a couple of months into the cross country season, was created as “a fun way to share healthy and easy recipes and to hopefully inspire others to make them,” said Roberts.

Their efforts have not gone unnoticed by teammates. “It’s helpful to see how other runners eat so you can take note of how to be healthy,” said sophomore cross country runner Haelee Chung, who has her own food Instagram account, @haeluvsboba, where she posts photos of her bubble tea drinks.

Roberts, Webster, and Buckley base their recipes on what their coaches teach them about nutrition. “As runners, it is very critical to eat properly. Having balanced meals and eating healthy is very critical in the running industry because it helps give the right amount of energy and help reduce injuries,” Roberts said. “Our coaches have had multiple conversations with us on what food is best to eat as a runner because it is different than what the average person eats.”

Webster added, “When we go to Humboldt running camp, we learn a lot about nutrition – what to eat, what not to eat, what foods help facilitate muscle growth or bone density.” Therefore, they try to cook with foods that are high in calcium and iron so as to maintain healthy bones and avoid getting anemia.

The athletes find their recipes on Pinterest and in professional runner Shalane Flanagan’s cookbook, Run Fast, Cook Fast, Eat Slow.

“We wanted to have more homemade recipes to show that people don’t have to spend a lot of money on healthy food meals. We all like to cook and experiment with different combinations of food and thought we should share it with the public,” said Roberts. “You don’t have to get through some fancy meal plan to [eat healthily.]”

Some recipes the account has featured include Mediterranean hummus wraps, oats and pumpkin breakfast balls, smoothie bowls, peanut butter granola, and avocado toast. In addition, sugar cookies and dark chocolate pumpkin peanut butter cups promote “the idea of everything in moderation and balance,” said Webster. They also post images from restaurants they’ve visited with recommendations on what to order.

Currently, the account has 73 followers, many of whom are current or former Campolindo runners.