Sport and Wellness Nutrition
Personalised Nutritional Advice
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  Mary    How did I become a Nutritionist? 
Having studied biological sciences at undergraduate level, I started my working career as a medical representative, working for major pharmaceutical companies.  One lasting impression of this role was being privileged to stand in theatre, late at night, and watch two heart transplant operations.  This was back in the 1980's and one of these was the first heart and lung transplant carried out to treat a bronchial tumour.
At the age of 30 I decided to make a significant career change and I entered IT as a systems analyst.  At the same time, I entered the corporate world of financial services and remained there for most of the next 20+ years.  I was never a true IT technician but soon moved into account management and then project management.
With those skills under my belt, I was equipped to take on a variety of roles in which I managed people, projects and processes.  At various times I was directly responsible for the personal management of 100+ people, for managing the roll out to a major high street bank of technology for a new HR Information System and for implementing a regulatory governance process model known as S-Ox in IT.  I commuted into central London from Bedfordshire for a long time (too long!) and then moved my job to Milton Keynes and my home to Buckingham.
For several years I harboured a desire to go back to University and, in my 50's, I decided to take the plunge and to study Applied Sport and Exercise Nutrition, as a full-time student, at Oxford Brookes University. The course built on a combination of my earlier interest in human biology and my far more recent discovery of exercise.
At school I had avoided 'PE' as much as possible, except for swimming, which I enjoyed without having any great talent.  As an adult I bought a succession of gym memberships and also tried to play squash now and again (not a good choice for one with poor hand to eye co-ordination) but essentially I had a very sedentary lifestyle.
In my mid 40's I joined a work-based team which entered the MoonWalk.  This is a midnight marathon walk in central London, supporting breast cancer charities.  26.2 miles was far in excess of my idea of a recreational 'walk' and I went into serious training for several months, increasing my distance around the country lanes each week.  All those long walks had an unexpected effect - I felt far better, mentally and physically, and my ankle bones reappeared!  At the time, my partner was being treated for cancer and this gave the MoonWalk special significance for me.
Once the MoonWalk was over, I found that I wanted to carry on with the walking but couldn't manage to commit the time for regular long walks.  Despite a lifelong belief that I wasn't 'built for running' I decided to try it as a more time-efficient form of exercise.  Although I found the whole thing very hard work, I persevered and eventually found the courage to join a running club.  I'm unlikely to win any races but I'm completely convinced of the benefits of regular exercise and now it gives me great personal satisfaction to be able to lead a beginner's running group each year at the club, thereby helping other people to obtain similar benefits.
My nutrition course taught the essential elements of human nutrition, nutrition for health and for sport and exercise.  My interests lie in the areas of health, where good nutrition is a long term strategy, and in sport and exercise where it is a critical basis for effective training and performance.
So, what does a Nutritionist eat?  There's no stock answer to that question.  I'm semi-vegetarian by choice.  This means that I generally eat a vegetarian diet, including fish and dairy products.  I eat meat occasionally.  I'm fortunate in that I have no food allergies or intolerances, but of course there are things that I just don't like.  I do eat cake and chocolate and I drink alcohol too.  Did I modify my diet in response to learning about nutrition?  Yes, I did, in a few areas, but without making such great changes that I feel restricted in any way.
I'm a strong advocate of the combination of exercise and a healthy diet, which brings both short and long term benefits in terms of mental and physical health.  I  advise athletes and enthusiastic amateurs, individuals, clubs and families, on improving their nutrition in order to help them attain their goals, whether performance, lifestyle or health related. 
Good nutrition doesn't mean giving up everything you like to eat, nor does it entail spending a fortune on pills and supplements.


Mary's Qualifications

MSc degree in Applied Sport and Exercise Nutrition (Oxford Brookes)
MA Cantab
BA Hons Natural Sciences (Cambridge)
Member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing 
Leadership in Running Fitness (UKA)
CRB enhanced checks (Disclosure and Barring status) - clear

photo by Barry Cornelius  





Mary can often be seen running along the country lanes around Gawcott...



 Sport Exercise Nutrition Nutritionist Buckingham Bucks Bicester Banbury Brackley Winslow