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Suzanne Nelson Steen

The dietary strategies of a 25-year-old bodybuilder were studied as he prepared for a contest. Food records were kept over a 6-month period that included the off-season, weight reduction phase, and week of a contest. Mean caloric intake during the off-season was 4,193 kcal (49 kcal/kg), Average intake per kg body weight was 8.7 g/kg carbohydrate and 2.8 g/kg protein. During the weight reduction phase of training, mean caloric intake was 3,020 kcal (37 kcal/kg). Carbohydrate intake averaged 6.1 g/kg and protein averaged 2.7 g/kg. The RDA was met for all micronutrients without any need for supplementation. Beginning at 3 weeks before the contest, dietary intake changed dramatically and haddock, rice, or potato were eaten every 2 hours. Protein intake averaged 4 g/kg. Carbo-loading was practiced the week precontest to enhance muscularity. During all phases the subject used anabolic steroids and consumed various supplements. During the off-season he took a high potency multivitamin/multimineral daily and 60-100 grams of amino acids when “needed.” As the competition drew closer, numerous additional supplements were taken. In light of these many unhealthy practices, alternative strategies should be negotiated with the athlete that are realistic, and changes should be implemented slowly.

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Suzanne Nelson Steen

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Suzanne Nelson Steen

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Robert A. Oppliger, Suzanne A. Nelson Steen and James R. Scott

Purpose: The purpose of this investigation was to examine the weight management (WM) behaviors of collegiate wrestlers after the implementation of the NCAA’s new weight control rules. Methods: In the fall of 1999, a survey was distributed to 47 college wrestling teams stratified by collegiate division (i.e., I, II, III) and competitive quality. Forty-three teams returned surveys for a total of 741 responses. Comparisons were made using the collegiate division, weight class, and the wrestler’s competitive winning percentage. Results: The most weight lost during the season was 5.3 kg ± 2.8 kg (mean ± SD) or 6.9% ± 4.7% of the wrestler’s weight; weekly weight lost averaged 2.9 kg ± 1.3 kg or 4.3% ± 2.3% of the wrestler’s weight; post-season, the average wrestler regained 5.5 kg ± 3.6 kg or 8.6% ± 5.4% of their weight. Coaches and fellow wrestlers were the primary influence on weight loss methods; however, 40.2% indicated that the new NCAA rules deterred extreme weight loss behaviors. The primary methods of weight loss reported were gradual dieting (79.4%) and increased exercise (75.2%). However, 54.8% fasted, 27.6% used saunas, and 26.7% used rubber/ plastic suits at least once a month. Cathartics and vomiting were seldom used to lose weight, and only 5 met three or more of the criteria for bulimia nervosa. WM behaviors were more extreme among freshmen, lighter weight classes, and Division II wrestlers. Compared to previous surveys of high school wrestlers, this cohort of wrestlers reported more extreme WM behaviors. However, compared to college wrestlers in the 1980s, weight loss behaviors were less extreme. Conclusions: The WM practices of college wrestlers appeared to have improved compared to wrestlers sampled previously. Forty percent of the wrestlers were influenced by the new NCAA rules and curbed their weight loss practices. Education is still needed, as some wrestlers are still engaging in dangerous WM methods.

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Suzanne Nelson Steen, Kirsten Mayer, Kelly D. Brownell and Thomas A. Wadden

The purpose of this study was to evaluate the adequacy of dietary intake in 16 female heavyweight rowers during the sprint racing phase of the season. Caloric intake for the rowers was 2,633 kcal/day, lower than expected given the training regimen of these athletes. On average, rowers consumed below-optimal levels of carbohydrate. Protein intake was satisfactory but fat intake was higher than recommended. For the majority of rowers, micronutrient intake met the RDA. However, calcium, zinc, B6, and B12 fell short of meeting two-thirds of the RDA for a significant percentage of rowers. The preevent meal consumed both 15 hr and 2 hr before the event provided less carbohydrate and fluid but more fat than desirable. Female heavyweight rowers would benefit from nutritional counseling that provides strategies for increasing complex carbohydrates, calcium, zinc, B6, and Bl2 while reducing dietary fat. Adequate fluid intake is also essential.