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Finish First Insider, Issue #70
August 17, 2009
Welcome Back

Please enjoy another issue packed with evidence-based information about sports performance training and news about current events at Finish First Sports Performance. If you find value in this e-newsletter, please forward this message to your teammates, coaches, or other parents of hard working athletes.

Banned Supplements: Should We Legalize Them?

By Coach J. Hoy, CSCS, USAW, Jump Stretch, Inc. Certified,
Elite Performance Scientist

Looking for an edge over their competition, athletes have used performance enhancement drugs (ergogenic aids or supplements) since the beginning of organized sports, with records dating back as far as the early Greeks using deer liver and lion meat as potential performance enhancers (8). Fast forward to today’s society and you can find over 30,000 commercially-available PED’s for athletes to choose from (5). With this many choices powered by multi-million dollar marketing efforts, and the potential upside to enhanced performance that leads to winning a sports competition or advancing to a higher level (ie. Professional status), it is extremely tempting for most athletes to take PED’s in spite of whether or not they are banned.

Ok, we know that many of the products are banned by various sports organizations, so why is there still an issue? And why are they banned?

Some experts suggest that the penalty for using banned substances in some professional sports organizations is not strong enough to deter athletes from using the PED’s. Many advocates of keeping many effective PED’s illegal suggest that they create an unfair advantage (7). However, sports have never really been fair. Various technologies, equipment, and training apparatus, only available to those with the financial resources, along with specific genetic advantages such as percentage of muscle fiber types, limb length, etc. have predisposed athletes to advantages over others—suggesting that this is not fair (2).

Financial resources create certain unfairness in sports.

For example, if hockey players from one major Division 1A university enjoy the use of all the training equipment imaginable, all the latest technologies, and a budget that includes several pairs of free shoes and athletic apparel plus all hockey equipment for each player, while hockey players from a smaller Division 1A university have a limited budget and use old training equipment, and do not receive any free shoes or apparel. So, who has the advantage, especially when it comes to recruiting and training for sports (which is considered performance enhancement)?

What about professional sports?

Let’s look at the Pittsburgh Pirates and the New York Yankees. Given that the finances for the Yankees are at least ten times that of the Pirates, it is very difficult for the Pirates to compete, making it “unfair.” As you can see, the “fairness” argument is lacking. PED’s enhance an athlete’s ability to perform, but do not improve an athlete’s ability to execute a specific task. For example, an ice hockey player using PED’s may become stronger by using them, but the player still must learn how to skate, shoot, pass, check, and handle a stick—all of which are not going to be found in a magic pill in a magic bottle. Additionally, the World Anti-Doping Agency argues that PED’s violate the ‘spirit of sport’ (7). However, upon closer observation, the value most at risk of being violated by using PED’s is the health of the athlete.

As I mentioned earlier, there are many different PED’s available, almost all of which are not regulated, or tested for their safety and or effectiveness. This is where it becomes dangerous. Athletes are making choices based on marketing, promotions, and often faulty or unethical research (1)(3)(4)(6)(8). If the use of PED’s was legalized, it could then be regulated, and it could be mandated that each product be tested for health, safety, and effectiveness and athletes could use PED’s under the direction and guidance of a certified performance coach, medical doctor, or registered sports dietitian. The playing field, so to speak, will most likely never be even. But the health and safety of each athlete should always be a number one concern. Legalizing the use of PED’s gives organizations a way to regulate and help ensure the health and safety of its athletes.


1. Ambrose, Peter J. "Drug use in Sports: A Veritable Arena for Pharmacists." Journal Of The American Pharmacists Association: Japha 44.4 (2004): 501.

2. Carr, Craig L. "Fairness and Performance Enhancement in Sports." Journal of the Philosophy of Sport 35.2 (2008): 193-207.

3. Petróczi, Andrea, and Eugene Aidman. "Psychological Drivers in Doping: The Life-Cycle Model of Performance Enhancement." Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, And Policy 3 (2008): 7-.

4. Petróczi, Andrea, et al. "Limited Agreement Exists between Rationale and Practice in Athletes' Supplement use for Maintenance of Health: A Retrospective Study." Nutrition Journal 6 (2007): 34-.

5. Petróczi, Andrea, and Declan P. Naughton. "Supplement use in Sport: Is there a Potentially Dangerous Incongruence between Rationale and Practice?" Journal Of Occupational Medicine And Toxicology (London, England) 2 (2007): 4-.

6. Petróczi, Andrea. "Attitudes and Doping: A Structural Equation Analysis of the Relationship between Athletes' Attitudes, Sport Orientation and Doping Behaviour." Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention, And Policy 2 (2007): 34-.

7. Savulescu, J., B. Foddy, and M. Clayton. "Why we should Allow Performance Enhancing Drugs in Sport." British journal of sports medicine 38.6 (2004): 666-70.

8. Woolf, Richard D. "Banned Substances in Organized Sports." Strength & Conditioning Journal (Allen Press) 27.2 (2005): 88-93.

Maintaining a Healthy Fueling Plan during the School Year

By: Heather R Mangieri , MS, RD, CSSD, LDN Finish First Sports Performance Nutrition Advisor

Can you believe it’s that time of year again? For many of us, going back to school means hectic schedules, multiple practices, and irregular meal times. Oh, and don’t forget the school lunch. Or maybe it means getting back to planning ahead in order to pack a healthy lunch. However you intend to get your fuel, you’ll need to have a plan! It is time to start thinking about what your goals are and putting together a strategy for maintaining your nutrition once the school year rolls around.

So what first? What are your goals? Do you need to lose weight? Do you need to gain weight? Are you trying to eat less processed foods? You can’t make a plan without knowing what you are planning for, right! You will need to decide if the school lunch meets your needs. Let’s say for example you are trying to gain weight. Is the school lunch enough calories to meet your needs? Do you have enough money to purchase two lunches? Could you get more calories for your buck if you packed a lunch? What beverages will you drink?

Proper fueling requires you to look at your entire day. Starting with a healthy breakfast (refer back to my article on “A breakfast of champions) will set you up for success. Next, is figuring out your lunch time slot. If you are eating at a later lunch time, you may need a snack. Be sure to take a quick, portable, snack with you (you will probably be consuming it between class periods- when you do not have a lot of time.) The next meal is lunch. If you have packed a lunch than you are in complete control over the amount of food or fuel you will consume. The school lunch may be a viable option as well. If you can make it to the end of your school day with a feeling of satiety and satisfaction, you have set yourself up for a successful evening. Many of you will go on to practice and/or games after school. This is often another obstacle!

After school is one of the most important fueling times. Again, what you eat depends on your goals. I often recommend an after school “first dinner.” Meaning, if your school day ends at 3:00 and your families typical dinner time is 6:00, you may need more than a “snack”. You may need a meal. Many of my clients that participate in sports report skipping the after school/before practice meal/snack because they do not want to play on a full stomach. Bad idea! I’m not suggesting that you consume a three course meal, but you should provide some fuel to get you through to your next meal. For those of you that do poorly with solid food, consider a sports drink and a quick to digest simple sugar (banana, dried fruit, English muffin with jam) to give your body the energy it needs. If you have 1 ½-2 hours before practice, that should be enough time to consume an appropriate snack (~300 calories) without feeling like you have a lump in your stomach. That is of course, if you are choosing the right foods. The right foods, remember, are the right foods for you- not anyone else!

After your game or practice, be sure to have your recovery fuel ready (chocolate milk, sports drink, peanut butter and jelly sandwich) to begin the recovery process. Lastly, a healthy meal when you return home to continue recovery and replenish your working muscles for the next day.

If you are not sure of the amount of total calories that you need to properly fuel for your practice or game, think about a consultation with a sports dietitian to help you put a plan together. I hope that this article can help you prepared for a school year filled with healthy lunches and snacks! See below for some examples of healthy packed lunches.

Nutritious Ideas for Packing a Healthy School Lunch (Adjust portion sizes based on individual needs)

1) Whole wheat Pita filled with hummus: add shredded carrots, diced cucumber and/or shredded cheddar or cubed feta cheese. Serve with sun chips and an apple.

2.) Bagel sandwich: whole grain bagel halves with reduced-fat cream cheese. Top one half with raisins and enjoy a cream cheese and raisin bagel. Could also be topped with craisins or dried blueberries. Serve with a handful of mixed nuts and juice.

3.) Cold Pizza: take your leftovers from the night before in a lunch box with an ice pack to keep it chilled.

4.) Tuna salad or chicken salad wrap filled with vegetables and shredded cheese. Serve with pretzel sticks.

5.) Turkey or ham wrap: roll turkey or ham inside a tortilla with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, cheese spread or other vegetables. Serve with blueberries or strawberries.

6.) A good old fashioned sandwich of choice (peanut butter and jelly) served with veggie sticks and ranch dressing.

8.) Salad: pack a vegetable salad with mixed dark greens, tomatoes, cheese, 2 hardboiled eggs, olives and whatever other vegetables you like for a full meal salad. Serve with a whole grain pita and a banana.

9.) Cottage cheese and fruit plate: ½ cup cottage cheese served with diced melon (watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew). Serve with 4-6 whole grain crackers.

New Fall Hours of Operation

The hours of operation at the World Training Headquarters will be changing, effective August 17, 2009.

During the week of August 17th, the facility will open at Noon and close at 7pm, Monday - Friday, and from 9am - Noon on Saturday.

During the week of August 24th, the facility will open at 1pm and close at 7pm, Monday - Friday, and from 9am - Noon on Saturday.

The hours for the following week (beginning August 31st through the Fall/Winter) are to be determined and will be posted in next week's newsletter.

If you have any questions, please call 412-787-5070. We look forward to a great fall and winter sports season for the Finish First Sports Performance athletes who have been working hard all summer!


Due to the volume of athletes currently using the Finish First Sports Performance world training headquarters, all athletes are required to schedule all sessions prior to arrival. In the future, if an athlete shows up without first scheduling for a session, there is no guarantee that s/he will be able to use the facility at that time. If the facility is at capacity, the athlete will need to come back for his/her session at a later time. At Finish First Sports Performance, we are taking all measures necessary to prevent overcrowding and help ensure the safety of the athletes and the quality of the programs. We appreciate your understanding and look forward to continuing to serve you.

How to Schedule Workouts Using the Online System

Due to the volume of athletes currently using the training facility, and the expected returning college athletes over the summer, you will need to begin scheduling your workout sessions in advance. It is recommended that you do so online. The Finish First Sports Performance coaches will have access to the sessions calendar to see when you are scheduled. When you arrive to the facility, it is also important to use your fingerprint to check in to the system. Below, you will find the correct way to schedule online. It is also now possible to make payments online, and check your training history. Please call if you have any questions.

1. Go to

2. Scroll down the left and under “Additional Services” you will see MEMBER LOGIN—click on that

3. A new window should pop up and on that window click on ATHLETE

4. Unless you have logged into the system before, your login ID is: last name-first name, and your password is: last name. So for John Smith, his login ID would be smith-john, and his password would be smith. You will be prompted to change your password so that only you may know it—write it down and don’t forget it—if you do forget it, please let Jeremy know so he can reset it.

5. Once logged in, on main screen you will see a box/button on the right titled “REGISTER FOR CLASSES”—click on this.

6. You can register or change your scheduled time up to 24 hours before the session. Any changes that need to be made within 24 hours of the session need to be made by calling Jeremy at 412-787-5070.

The online system works best with Internet Explorer (most recent version).

Motivational Quotes

"A great leader's courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position."
-- Dr. John C. Maxwell

"Where there is no hope in the future, there is no power in the present."
-- Dr. John C. Maxwell

"Motivation alone is not enough.If you have an idiot and you motivate him,now you have a motivated idiot"
-- Jim Rohn

"If we don't start,it's certain we can't arrive"
-- Zig Ziglar

Thank You for Your Support

Thanks again for subscribing to this free e-newsletter. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoy writing it. I look forward to your feedback as I continue to research to bring you the most current scientific training information available.

Should you have any specific article requests or questions, email me at Please visit for detailed sports performance training information and programs offered exclusively by Finish First Sports Performance.

Yours In Training,

Coach Jeremy S. Hoy, CSCS, USAW, Jump Stretch, Inc. Certified,
Elite Performance Scientist

Finish First Sports Performance

For Finish First Insider backissues #1 - 29, click here

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