I was never a doer of typical sports — from competitive gymnastics, to springboard diving, to the obscure track and field event of pole vault — my preferred method of activity involves more risk and body-propelling than the average. With a knack for body awareness and a stroke of luck, I landed a spot on Stanford's track and field team three years ago. I then began to ponder what a collegiate pole vaulter eats in a day.

fitness, Sneakers, running, Tennis shoes, Yoga, water bottle
Jocelyn Hsu

Throughout my exhilarating, yet somewhat tumultuous, six year pole vault journey to date, I've learned how to fuel my body adequately and to alter my food intake to meet the demands of each training phase. So here's my version of what a collegiate pole vaulter eats in a typical day during the school year.

Breakfast = a lot

If you know me, you know I need a big breakfast and at least three cups of coffee before 10:00 — or I'm down for the count before the day even begins. My breakfast of choice varies by level of cooking feasibility, variety of options available, and my schedule, but it always, always, always includes a cup or four of black coffee.

omelet, omelette, spinach, cheese, egg, vegetable
Keren Straus

When I'm somewhere that resembles home with free reign over a stove-equipped kitchen, I like to prepare myself a two-egg omelet with chicken sausage, mushrooms, spinach, and feta cheese, topped with Cholula hot sauce. On the side, I slather a banana with crunchy peanut butter, or pile almond butter and blueberries on top of a piece of whole wheat toast.

Kassie McIntyre

When I have early obligations or know I'll be in a time crunch  (i.e. post-gymnastics training in the morning), I prepare a big, portable container — or a nearly empty jar of nut butter — of overnight oats the night before. My usual recipe includes half a cup of steel-cut or rolled oats, a mashed banana, crunchy peanut or almond butter, almonds, and two scoops of Orgain protein powder, all fully covered with skim milk. And of course, I must pregame the gym session with a Kashi granola bar.

egg, scrambled, bacon, cheese
Olivia Chadwick

And last but certainly not least, in the dining hall, my breakfast of choice always consists of about three scrambled eggs, a salad of arugula, cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots and zucchini dressed with Tomatillo salsa, alongside a banana or piece of wheat toast with peanut butter and crushed flax seeds, and a glass of skim milk. For weekend brunch I swap the scrambled eggs for a made-to-order omelet.

I'll have class with a side of practice for lunch, please.

In addition to just loving all things breakfast, part of the reason I load up in the morning is because I typically have class, practice, or both during lunch hours. Though my calendar dictates what type of food I go for, my lunch almost always resembles a series of snacks and spans a period of several hours.

flour, dough, bread, cereal
Allison Wojtowecz

On vault days, we usually practice and lift from 11:30 to 3:00 in the afternoon. I don't like to vault on a full stomach, but if I feel like I need more energy, I munch on a banana throughout the session. Immediately following a lift, my body craves two scoops of Orgain protein powder and a cup of skim milk. Then, I'll stop by the student-athlete fueling station for a Kize bar, carrots and hummus, and half of a deli meat-filled sandwich to tide me over until dinner.

Mediterranean, Greek, peppers, zoe's kitchen, olives, tomatoes, kebabs, chicken, greek salad, Pita
Katie Kasperson

The dreaded 11:30 to 1:30 class days lend little flexibility with regards to eating lunch, unless the professor so graciously grants us a 10-minute break. When the stars align — a) we get a break and b) practice later in the afternoon — I'll drop money and splurge on a loaded salad or specialty meal from one of Stanford's many eclectic cafés (Crepadilla, I'm coming for you).

vegetable, pepper, stir-fry, broccoli, salad, onion
Maxwell Faucher

In the unfortunate and more likely case that I a) cannot count on these breaks and b) quick food is geographically unavailable, I'll grab something from my dorm or the dining hall in the morning. The classic leftover chicken wrap, carrots and hummus from the fueling station, or a homemade turkey sandwich smuggled from dining hall breakfast.

sandwich, bread, toast, ham
Jocelyn Hsu

In light of my impending housing situation, I will be mostly without a meal plan for the first time in my college experience. Thankfully, Suites is equipped with a phenomenal chef who prepares breakfast, lunch, and dinner on weekdays. So in the off chance that I have nothing going on between the hours of 11:00 and 2:00, you can most definitely find me in our dining society, devouring whatever our chef has crafted for lunch that day. Even in the case where I have class or practice, I can opt for a #lateplate that is available to me after lunch hours.

vegetable, meat, sauce, chicken, parsley
Shalayne Pulia

Snack o'clock: why I am McSnacky

The daily schedules of student-athletes, though differing in content and start times (looking at you early bird rowers), are typically nonstop for 12 hours every day. Realizing this — and knowing that lunch may involve one-handing a sandwich while biking to class — I shove 3 to 4 snacks in my backpack in the morning before I set off for my day to be eaten in between meals, before practice, and after workouts.

apple slice, apple, peanut butter, PB, snack, healthy snack, Fruit, nut butter nation
Jocelyn Hsu

My snack palate varies, but here are some of my favorites: Kashi cereal, Larabars, carrots (or any veggie) dipped in hummus, bananas, peanut butter (sometimes the jar comes with), Harvest Snaps, trail mix (sans M&M's), Skinny Pop, deli turkey, Baby Bell cheese, wheat bread, apples, brown rice cakes, plain Greek yogurt, Kize bars, overnight oats, hard-boiled eggs, tuna packets, and many more. The student-athlete snack limit does not exist.

Winner winner chicken (and carb and many veg and dairy and more chicken) dinner

What, when, and where I eat for dinner changes every single night, due to the excellent and delicious variety offered by the Performance Dining team and our impending chef at Suites. Composition wise, I stay fairly consistent with this rough formula — 2 servings of protein, 2 servings of carbs, an absurd amount of vegetables, maybe 1 serving of fruit, 1 to 2 servings of dairy, and other miscellaneous dressing-like foods to get some healthy fats. Some of my dinner go-to's include:

meat, vegetable, chicken
Emma Delaney

Proteins: grilled or roasted chicken, grilled salmon, chicken Gardein, Hoki (or any fish), turkey burgers, turkey meatballs, cottage cheese, eggs, barbacoa.

Carbohydrates: whole grain pasta (penne, ravioli, tortellini, etc. — pasta is pasta is pasta), rice noodles, brown or sushi rice, quinoa, whole grain tortillas, Japanese sweet potatoes, red or fingerling potatoes, baked sweet potato fries, lentils, kidney beans.

Vegetables: anything and everything roasted or grilled (with the exception of eggplant) — zucchini, mushrooms, various squashes, asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, etc. I'm very open to trying new vegetables that come straight from Stanford's farm. And from the salad bar: arugula, spinach, carrots, shaved zucchini, grape tomatoes, edamame, artichokes.

blueberry, yogurt, berry
greta dylus

Dairy: skim milk, non-fat plain Greek yogurt, mozzarella balls, shaved Parmesan, Goat, Feta, any cheese on top of cheese.

Fruit: blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries on top of plain Greek yogurt or a post-dinner apple.

Other: I typically go for no-sugar added dressings when I can — Kale vinaigrette, Dijon mustard, balsamic vinegar, red sauce — and stay away from ranch, mayo, Bolognese and Alfredo sauce. I also have a heavy hand when it comes to adding avocados and/or guacamole, any type of hummus, roasted garlic, pesto, and Cholula atop my mountainous dinners.

hummus, cream, vegetable, sweet, bread
Paige Twombly

There is no rhyme or reason to my final big meal of the day — I enter every dinner with a big empty bowl, an open mind, and plans to get seconds of whatever I want more of. I trust the people behind and sources of my food, so I don't hesitate to try new things every night. From Yuka fries and salmon cakes to butternut squash lasagna and vegetable tamales, my range of tastes has exponentially increased since coming to Stanford.

Night cap: cereal

Depending on when I eat dinner, the volume of my workload for the evening, and the intensity of our training cycle, I may or may not eat again before bed — but I'm always prepared to eat something if and when hunger strikes. During fall training, I'm ravenous every few hours, so commence the frequent night snack.

Breakfast, cereal, wheat, milk, Cheerios, Bowl, Gluten Free
Caroline Ingalls

I like to come full circle with my day of eating by ending with arguably one of the best breakfast foods out there: cereal. Though I abstain from the sugar-laden classics that defined my childhood (Peanut Butter Cap'n Crunch, Fruity Pebbles, Cinnamon Toast Crunch — you may be mostly gone, but never forgotten), there is just something about a bowl of cereal. You can find Kashi of any variety on the regular or Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheerios on occasion in my bowl (or mug because #dormlife), drenched in skim milk.

milk, yogurt, soda, water, ice, cream, juice
Kristine Mahan

Lastly, I always double fist my food with water. I cumulatively drink enough water to equal my body weight in ounces every day. If I don't drink a sufficient amount of water, I feel myself lag both during workouts and in class. Thus, I'm not afraid to be that girl who gets up twice during one lecture to use the bathroom. Though I'm not the type to lug around an entire gallon jug, I never stray from my reusable bottles. Life's a sport, drink it up.

alcohol, cocktail, tea, straw
Nicole Cohen

One last disclaimer: I don't eat this way every day. For example, I prep for hard running workouts on Saturday mornings with a light morning snack of two rice cakes, a banana, and a cup of coffee. We then run on a late brunch schedule that often consists of an omelet with a side of pancakes from Stacks, our favorite spot. I like to go out to eat or for drinks with my friends once a week or so. I don't have much of a sweet tooth, but I develop one when it involves ice cream or dark chocolate. And I never restrict myself — if I want it, I eat it in moderation.

chocolate, coffee
Jennifer Cao

The above methodology gives an average depiction of my eating habits, and it works for me. There are no strict recipes, but my daily ingredient list centers around very little added-sugar, copious amounts of black coffee, big spoonfuls of nut butter, water on water on water, snacks galore, plenty of dairy (#gotmilk), and enough vegetables to feed a family of five. So this is what this collegiate pole vaulter eats in a day.