Gate Athlete On Eating Healthy

Jack Murray

Colgate’s student athletes function in a different way than the rest of the student body. In addition to the full course load of a typical Colgate student, these athletes essentially take on a full time job as they pass their days with Raider victories ever on their mind. They spend countless hours in the gym, on the court and on the field even during the off-season. In addition to their required practices and workouts, student athletes also have to stay in shape on their own time, which can understandably be tough in the rural environment of Hamilton, N.Y.. This certainly requires a great deal of self-discipline;  not only do these athletes have to stay on top of their busy schedules, but they also have to pay close attention to their food intake.

I talked to Jackie Macy, a sophomore setter on the women’s volleyball team about the challenges of finding healthy options to stay in shape as a Colgate

student athlete.

Q: How hard has it been to eat healthy in Hamilton, NY?

A: It definitely can be hard at times to find the right food that’s both healthy and filling at the same time in such a small and rural environment As an athlete, you are always in a time crunch, and when the two drive thru options in town are McDonald’s and Dunkin’ Donuts you don’t exactly have a lot of healthy choices to pick from. I know a lot of girls on my team love Hamilton Eatery and Hamilton Whole Foods because they offer a really great selection of healthy food and protein-rich items that we need to stay in shape and keep our energy up. There’s definitely a trade off between good and bad options, because while we do have some good healthy food options, they are slim and can get pretty repetitive and expensive after a while.”

Q: How much leeway do you have from coaches on what types of foods to eat?

A: Our coaches and trainers are not that involved in our diet and give us a lot of freedom to choose what we eat. I think they have the mindset that we’ve gotten this far to become Division 1 collegiate athletes, so they expect that we know what is and isn’t good to put in our bodies.

If someone comes back really out of shape and it’s affecting their play, then they usually talk to our trainers and make up a plan that can include extra cardio or a new diet. If a player feels that they’re not putting on muscle, then our trainers will ask them to make a food diary and go over it with them to pinpoint a problem and find a solution. Other than those two situations, our coaches and trainers give us free range over our diet.

Q: Has your busy schedule affected how you work out at Colgate?

A: One part of being a student athlete is that you have pretty strict, regimented workout schedules. Because these are mandatory, they take out the hassle of getting up and getting motivated to go to the gym. It’s easier to stay in shape because while it can be a demanding and exhausting schedule, it leaves you no wiggle room to slack off or to not give it your all in workouts. You’re not just getting fit for you personally; you’re getting fit for your teammates as well by doing your part to help make the team stronger.

Getting by as a student athlete at Colgate evidently has its challenges, but the rigorous schedules enforced by the coaches and trainers help to ensure that everyone stays in shape. Although the healthy food options in Hamilton aren’t extensive, athletes still manage to stay on top of their diets and get all of the food that they need. Thus, staying fit as an athlete in college can prove difficult, but student athletes at Colgate know the ins and outs of staying in shape.

Contact Jack Murray at [email protected].