IGCT Episode #202: Tiffany Byrd - “Meet Them Where They Are”

April 6, 2017

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Tiffany Byrd enters her first year as the Director of Sport Nutrition after joining the OU Athletic Department in March of 2013. Byrd will be responsible for developing comprehensive nutrition programs geared toward improving training, performance, and recovery of all student-athletes.

She will work with teams and individual student-athletes providing direction and communicate the value proper nutrition has on promoting health and enhancing athletic performance.

Byrd joins the Sooners after serving in a similar capacity at Baylor University for the Department of Athletic Performance. During her tenure at BU, Byrd served as the Director of Sports Nutrition and was responsible for the nutrition aspects of all 19 programs primarily serving football, men’s basketball, defending national champion women’s basketball, soccer, softball, track and field, and volleyball. Some of Byrd’s day-to- day responsibilities for the Bears included pre- and post-workout supplementation, meal planning, nutrition education, body composition, and supervision to nutrition student interns.

Prior to her appointment at Baylor, Byrd completed an internship with the University of Alabama. During her time with the Crimson Tide, Byrd worked primarily with football and women’s gymnastics, along with men’s & women’s golf, softball, soccer, baseball, and women’s tennis.

Four of these teams won a national championship during or immediately following Byrd’s tenure. Byrd completed a sports nutrition internship with the University of Oregon football program prior to the Ducks playing for the national championship. She followed this up with a stint in the same capacity with the University of Louisville athletic program. Byrd has also served as a consultant to the University of Nebraska women’s gymnastics team in 2012, where the Lady Huskers went on to win a Big Ten championship.

An Orlando, Florida native, Byrd graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition, Fitness, and Health Promotion from Nebraska and a Master of Science degree in Human Nutrition from the University of Alabama.

As an athlete, Byrd competed for the University of Alabama women’s gymnastics program that won the NCAA championship in 2002. After transferring to the University of Nebraska, Byrd was named “Newcomer of the Year” and led the Lady Huskers to a Big 12 Championship. She was later voted team captain for her senior campaign and also won the team’s “Inspiration Award”. During her 5 th year, the four-year Academic All-American helped the Lady Huskers to a second Big 12 Championship in 3 years.

Byrd is a Registered Dietitian and a Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics who is licensed in the state of Oklahoma. She is a member of numerous professional organizations including the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly ADA), the Sports, Cardiovascular, and Wellness Nutrition (SCAN), and the Collegiate and Professional Sports Dietitians Association (CPSDA).

Byrd has been married to her husband Jay since March 2011 and currently resides in Norman.

In This Episode We Discuss:

Why she became a Sports RD.
What experience in her journey impacted her the most, and Why.
Biggest mistake she has made and how she learned from it.
Challenges of running a Sports Nutrition program.
Best tactics used to address those issues.
Recommendations for programs that don't have a RD.
Where she sees the profession going.
Best piece of coaching advice she has ever received.
Her favorite quote, Book/App/Website recommendation.

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