Allison Maurer, Associate Athletic Director for Student Health and Wellness
Prepare, Perform, Recover (PPR)

Shared from Irish Times, Fall 2021

You’ll find those initials (PPR) in the Twitter handle of first-year sports nutrition teacher Allison Maurer – @pprfuel. But don’t think that she’s new to the profession. Since 2004, Maurer has been training and fueling athletes at the University of Colorado (2004-2007), the University of Tennessee (2007-2016), and the Pittsburgh Pirates (2016-2020). She also spent an off-season working part-time with the Fighting Irish football team via an invitation from KCHS President Dickie Sompayrac who knew of Maurer through a mutual friend. It took living in the Pirates Covid-19 bubble for Maurer to reconnect with Mr. Sompayrac and return to Knoxville and bring sports nutrition to the student-athletes at KCHS. Recalling her three months of isolation during the 2020 baseball season, Maurer said, “It was the most mentally and emotionally draining experience I’ve ever had.”

In her full-time role at Catholic, she is realizing her dream of taking “the performance model that’s been done at the collegiate and professional level and starting it at the high school level.” Maurer’s classes are open to
anyone interested in nutrition and cover hydration, carbohydrates, protein, fat, recovery nutrition, brain health, sleep and nutrition, gut health, obesity and eating disorders. In a real-life application of these topics, Maurer recently took her class to a local supermarket to learn to see food as fuel, not as ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Instead, she emphasizes, “I want them to understand that all foods fit, and that a ‘food first’ approach is the best,” (meaning supplements have a place but should NOT be the focus.)

Maurer, along with fellow nutrition teacher Carolyn Williamson, seeks to build a nutrition program where all sports teams have access to the best facilities, sports medicine, dietitians and strength coaches. “I want all the kids to feel like their sport, their goals and their performance is important, because it is. I also want to build a department where teams and athletes have an opportunity to train with each other. Having baseball train with girls’ basketball, or football train with lacrosse… those are the opportunities we have for all student-athletes to understand and appreciate what other student-athletes are doing. It also creates camaraderie and an unconditional support that I hope to see transfer to all sports. What is better than training with others you’ve never met and becoming invested in his or her goals just as much as your own?” Maurer concluded “The sky is the limit, and I can’t wait to watch this whole thing FLY!”

Shared from Irish Times, Fall 2021 edition. Irish Times, A Newsletter for the Knoxville Catholic High School Community. Read Irish Times