You know that you have RED-S / REDs (Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport), but you’re afraid that making changes to your fueling and training will cause your athletic performance to suffer. Sports nutrition and performance expert Rebecca McConville empathizes with your concerns, but explains why you shouldn’t worry about taking the steps you need to in order to recover.
Read the transcript
[Tina] I’m focused on my performance, but I also recognize I have RED-S. Will my performance suffer and for how long? Will it ultimately get better?
[Becca] I can hear the worry in that voice. It’s that, “Am I ready for change?” You know, I never throw out “yes” or “no” type answers. The worry and angst about making change can sometimes influence our performance, but I’ve yet to ever see anything that says when you focus on taking better care of your health, that that’s going to lead as a detriment to your performance. The act of self-care and kindness. Kristen Neff will say like, self-compassion actually translates into better performance outcomes. So there shouldn’t be any detriment to your performance from working on RED-S.
And even more, let’s think about the protection from injuries. When we know that a bone stress injury at minimum is 8 to 16 weeks. If you can start to help decrease your odds by improving your nutrition and correcting that energy balance, then I think that really can speak to the fact that that will better your performance.
[Tina] That is such a good point and thing to focus on. Particularly if someone has had injuries in the past, you know how horrible that feels, you know how crushing that is. And I mean, as runners, we’re always walking the line of seeing what we can get out of ourselves without pushing it too far, but this is such a good example of, in many ways, what do you have to lose, right? What do you have to lose is your season, is your race, is your goal. What do you have to gain? Well, you could feel better, you could feel stronger, but at minimum, you are, as you said, decreasing your risk of injury. So, thank you. That’s a really helpful answer.
check it out
Recovering from RED-S is hard. It’s even harder if you’re working through it alone. Even if you have professional support, they’re not available 24-7, and that can lead to going down search engine rabbit holes that have the potential to derail everything.
Our online resource, RED-S: Realize. Reflect. Recover, will answer all those questions swimming around in your head about recovery. It will give you the opportunity to connect with the experts you’ve come to know here, and to surround yourself with a community of others who are going through it too. THANK YOU! to Athletic Greens and Tracksmith for supporting this YouTube series and RED-S: Realize. Reflect. Recover.
Go to athleticgreens.com/reds to get five free travel packs of AG1 and a free one year’s supply of vitamin D3+K2 with your subscription!
When you go to https://tracksmith.com/tina and use the code TINA15 at checkout, you’ll get free shipping and Tracksmith will donate 5% of your order to Rising Hearts, the Indigenous-led nonprofit founded by Jordan Marie Daniels.
more about becca:
Rebecca McConville, RD, LD, CSSD, CEDS, is a sports nutrition and performance expert who helps her clients explore and strengthen their relationship with food, weight, body image and sports performance. Her book, “Finding Your Sweet Spot,” helps athletes maximize their potential while avoiding the dangers of RED-S. You can find Becca at https://beccamcconville.com.