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District H Crossfit Nutrition Program

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Sam Mackinnon, RD

Hi Everyone! I would like to introduce myself (Hi, I’m Sam) and start by saying that ‘excited’ doesn’t fully grasp my feelings on joining the District H family, and I’m sure that sounds over-the-top but please allow me to explain:

I have been a Registered Dietitian for over 7 years now and my husband Lee and I just moved back to Houston in June after spending the last 3 years in Aberdeen, Scotland. To keep it short and sweet, job prospects weren’t great for me in Aberdeen so I ended up working quite a few odd jobs (oh the stories I could tell…) to help out and make use of my time. Halfway in, I started my own business doing what I love but could only make it work part-time. Now that I’m back, I’m so unbelievably happy to be able to focus 100% on health and nutrition. Having crossfit mixed in is just the cherry on top because I’m a HUGE crossfit/crossfit games nerd (No seriously, I met Annie Thorisdottir and Katrin Davidsdottir at Annie’s gym in Iceland and got to meet and chat with Sam Briggs at Europe Regionals about her recovery).

So that’s why I’m excited, but here’s why I think I’m a great fit to help you start/build/continue on your nutrition and fitness journey:

I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia. In 2011, I completed my Dietetic Internship through the University of Houston and became accredited through the Commission on Dietetic Registration as a Registered Dietitian. This means that I studied for YEARS taking classes purely on metabolism (energy pathways) and medical nutrition therapy and organic chemistry and human anatomy and physiology. Then, during my internship, I had to complete over 1200+ hours of supervised practice under other dietitians in various areas of nutrition- oncology, public health, low-income, athletic performance, and functional medicine/naturopathic medicine. After that, I was eligible to sit for the exam to get my RD credentials.

Since then, I gained clinical, community, corporate and counseling experience through MD Anderson Cancer Center, the Houston Food Bank, Adventures in Wellness-Houston, Wellness Corporate Solutions, Crossfit EaDo and Anytime Fitness. Through my own business in Aberdeen, I had several on-going clients with many different nutritional needs and provided health and athletic performance presentations to Aberdeen University’s Sports Program and other local groups. I have experience with varying cancers, diabetes, heart disease, celiac, crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, eating disorders, food allergies/sensitivities, and crossfit/endurance athletic performance.

So that’s my resume. But why nutrition in the first place? I grew up like most of you being surrounded by magazines pushing skinny beautiful women and the latest diet trends and my mother tried them ALL. One week she was on Atkins, then it was South Beach, then it was the Mediterranean… I wanted to get to the bottom of all these diets, I wanted to understand the research and possess the knowledge to make healthy decisions for myself, and most importantly, I wanted to stop feeling like I was starving myself. My own weight had started fluctuating at that point. I was a freshman in college set to double major in International Business and Spanish and then I did a 180, switched to Nutrition and never looked back.

My nutrition philosophy involves a gradual change in a person’s diet. I don’t expect people to go from fast food to farmers’ markets overnight. I like to focus on small changes people can commit to and over time, create a healthy diet that you also enjoy eating. There’s nothing worse than cringing at the food you feel like you have to eat, so I think it’s important to find what will work for you and your taste preferences.

What’s also important to know about me is that I practice what I preach. I eat lots of veggies, I weigh and measure my breakfast every morning, I log in My Fitness Pal when I need to keep my own weight in check, and exercise via crossfit, running, and yoga, BUT I also allow myself to indulge in some of my favorite (and maybe not so nutritious) foods to create an overall healthy balance. I haven’t always eaten the way I do now though; it took effort and willingness to change and that’s something I hope to find in my future clients.

If you see me at District H, please feel free to come say hello! I’m easily intimidated being the “new kid” but I would love to get to know more of you!