Feeding the Young Athlete: Sports Nutrition Made Easy for Players, Parents and Coaches


Feeding the Young Athlete: Sports Nutrition Made Easy for Players, Parents and Coaches


by Cynthia Lair with Scott Murdoch, Ph.D, RD

Age Range: 12+
Paperback: 144 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0983661528

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Eat to win! Practice is only part of a winning sports strategy. Whole foods have to be part of the playbook to increase energy, endurance, and focus, both on and off the field. What to eat and when to eat, pre-game, during, and afterward? How much fluid do you need to be hydrated? What to eat when you’re on the road? These are essential tips for young athletes, competing on a demanding schedule and eating on the run.

In this expanded second edition, simple nutritional lessons are organized into 10 Essential Eating Guidelines and recipes for cooking with whole grains and vegetables. These recipes and eating tips offer a gateway for young players, parents, and coaches to improve performance and establish lifelong eating habits.

Cynthia Lair, nutritionist, culinary curriculum director at Bastyr University, and soccer mom, along with dietitian and triathlete, Scott Murdoch, PhD, bring you this essential reading for today’s young athlete to choose and to make great foods and drinks that nourish and replenish, at home, at school, or on the road.

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Top Five Reasons to Read This Book

1) Simple do-able directions -for when and what to eat to play your best; what to shop for and pack in your bag; how to choose the most nutrient rich foods,  how to eat on the road and more.  There are short lists on EVERY page.

2) We encourage whole foods eating and cooking.  This is not a book about powders, pills and neon colored drinks.  Why young people need real food is spelled out clearly and lip-smacking recipes using those foods are plentiful.

3) Teamwork is emphasized on so many levels.  Whether we’re talking about how nutrients work together as a team, how your body and food work together as a team or how team meals can enhance camaraderie, this thread is woven throughout the book

4) Understanding how food affects body and mind is tantamount for health.  Applying better eating to sports is immediate, palpable and has the potential of affecting the way kids will eat during their whole life.

5) There’s nothing quite like this book on the market.  This book addresses a young person’s relationship to food through  their immediate concern –  wanting to play well in today’s game! And it does so in a cheerful, visually exciting way.  Go food!



“OUTSTANDING, GRADES 6-12. This attractive, contemporary, hip-looking, casual-sounding title is actually an updated edition of Lair’s 2002 title of the same name (Moon Smile Press), now out of print and generally unavailable even in libraries. This Readers to Eaters revised edition is superb and will surely motivate young athletes to be more conscious of their nutrition, make simple, immediate changes, and perhaps even keep focused for the rest of their lives on both healthy nutrition and positive athletic performance. A dynamic mix of scientific information and friendly advice, Lair offers up clarity on nearly every page. For example: “Is there anything more satisfying than cornbread? Carry a slice in your sports bag to take advantage of the post-game glycogen window.” The explanation of glycogen is given in several places and is also in the index. The recipe for cornbread follows, as do 33 more recipes. There are lists and charts such as “Eat this. Don’t eat this.” “Drink this. Don’t drink this.” “Bring this in your bag.” Many other straightforward drink-, meal-, and snack-planning tools will clarify and guide young people in taking good care of themselves. A great offering, appealing to exactly the age when people often take charge of their own health, and exemplary in its gender-neutrality. The quantity of information will impress the parents and coaches; the clarity of organization, layout, and content will ensure young readers are not overwhelmed.”
—Erica Siskind, Oakland Public Librarian, BayViews (Association of Children’s Librarians of Northern California)

“Great food for our active bodies and minds. I just finished Cynthia Lair’s book and was really impressed with how much useful information she packed into a simple, readable format. The subtitle, Sports Nutrition Made Easy, is exactly right. The chapters are divided into healthy food and drink recommendations for before, during and after games and how these foods feed our bodies and minds. I am looking forward to trying some of the recipes in the last third of the book for yummy breakfasts, dinners and snacks. A great resource for parents, teens and coaches who care about easy alternatives to junk food and the nutritional reasons behind them.”
—Clare Hodgson Meeker, Author, Soccer Dreams: Playing the Seattle Sounders FC Way

“Do you struggle to feed the athletes in your family? Are you baffled when it comes to pre and post practice meal solutions? The eye catching graphics and sensible quotes caught the eyes of all my children. They sat and read the book, commenting approvingly on recipes and tips. I definitely think they digested the material as well. Thank you, Cynthia and Readers to Eaters, for a great family-friendly culinary resource!”
—Melissa A. Trainer, Al Dente, Amazon Food & Cooking Blog

“A refreshing look at fueling athletes from the inside out. Feeding the Young Athlete serves up healthy sports food ideas paired with the science behind how they improve performance. Recipes included will require a trip to the grocery store but will open your eyes (and mouth) to some adventurous new sports foods.”
—Emily Edison, Sports and Wellness Dietitian, Owner, Momentum Nutrition & Fitness