Tag Archives: registered dietitian

Healthy road trip snacks, and doing things that make you nervous

What snacks do you eat on your road trips? I’m going on a road trip, and as a dietitian, I think about eating healthy (about 80% of the time – the goal is a balanced diet, not a militant one!). Below is the video I made about the types of snacks I’m bringing, and a little behind the scenes info. Since this is my first YouTube video (another bucket list item accomplished!) it’s very amateur, a little rambly, and I’m a bit nervous, but the information’s good. 😉

Behind the scenes:

I’m more nervous to record this than I ever was to do a live presentation or to publish a blog post. It’s super awkward to record on the tablet (and I have some difficulty keeping it still because it’s hard to hold). At first I’m worried that the other people around will think I’m weird, but no one seems to care so that concern goes away quickly.

Once I get into it, it really isn’t that bad. I pretend that I’m talking with a friend on video chat and things start to go much more smoothly… until the end, where I just keep rambling! (It has the same “long goodbye” feel of a video chat, so at least I’m consistent!)

The thing that makes me the most nervous about posting the video is being open to new ways to be criticized. Doing this makes me realize how much I care about what other people think, and I don’t like that very much. I play with the idea of editing it, but thankfully, my video software isn’t working, so I post it unedited, which I like better in the end because it’s more real. I think it’s good to be challenged outside of my comfort zone and to learn about myself. This is something I like most about doing the things on my bucket list, and this video is no different, in fact, in that sense it is one of the most challenging I’ve done in a while.

When was the last time you did something that made you nervous?
What did you learn from it?
(And, of course, what snacks do you take on your road trips?)

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“Follow your bliss” – Interview with Jill Weisenberger

Today’s feature interview is with Jill Weisenberger, dietitian, nutrition and diabetes expert, author, consultant, speaker, and spokesperson. I asked to interview Jill because I liked what she said in another interview: when asked about how she got into self-employed work, she replied, “Dreamed it and went for it.” Below, Jill shares her strategy for writing three books (and tackling other large projects), her four favorite foods, and the best advice she’s ever received.

Photo provided by and used with permission from Jill Weisenberger (jillweisenberger.com/) for The Goal List (thegoallist.com)

Photo provided by and used with permission from Jill Weisenberger

Name and website:
Jill Weisenberger, MS, RDN, CDE, FAND, CHWC

Fun fact about you:
My four favorite foods are strong black coffee, dark chocolate, peanut butter and dry red wine. I like to say that if I didn’t have good portion control strategies, I’d be a hyperactive fat drunk.

Funner fact:
Most nights after dinner, I chase my dog and pretend to be one. It doesn’t matter how late it is or how tired I am, he rarely lets me escape this duty.

Funnest fact:
Other than eating a delicious, nutritious, home-prepared dinner, my favorite family activity is mountain biking.

What do you think has been essential to your success as an entrepreneur? 
I am forward thinking and very organized. I am able to look at a project, divide it into multiple tasks, anticipate obstacles, brainstorm possible solutions and execute a well-designed but flexible plan. That’s how I had the stomach to write more books after my first, Diabetes Weight Loss-Week by Week.

What was something that surprised you about entrepreneurship? 
It still amazes me just how many opportunities are out there for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists. I feel as if I have multiple professions: nutrition counselor, coach, recipe developer, author, freelance writer, media spokesperson and on and on.

If you had to describe your blog/website in 6 words or less, what would you say? 
Science-based, practical nutrition and health advice.

Who or what inspires you? 
My Registered Dietitian Nutritionist colleagues have inspired me so much over the years because of their great accomplishments and career paths that have seemed to be out of the box. It is my husband, however, who has encouraged me and led me to believe that I can do nearly anything I want to do.

What is your all-time favorite bucket list item (of yours or someone else’s)?
Most items on my bucket list have to do with traveling, including some type of an African Safari. One big one is to participate in a culinary course in Italy, France or other European country.

If you aren’t doing anything related to your businesses, what are you doing in your free time? 
Jogging, playing with my dogs, spending time with my daughters and husband.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? 
Follow your bliss.

Readers: Join me in thanking Jill for sharing her time, stories, and advice with us! If you want to learn more about her, check out her website (which also has a blog with recipes, practical tips, and links to the usual social media sites).

Want more interviews like this? Leave a comment and let me know who you would like to see featured, and be sure to sign up to stay updated on all the latest posts!

Become an RD (February 2014)

Shelly Najjar passed the Registered Dietitian exam

Part of the results printout after taking the test

Yesterday I passed my registration exam for dietetics and am now an RD (Registered Dietitian)!!

That means I have done one more thing on my list! (…and that I am now credentialed to provide nutrition therapy and specific dietary changes to help with special medical conditions, etc, and hopefully can find a job).

The story of this list item starts back in 8th grade, when we had to do science fair projects every year (looking back, I’m glad we did, I learned a lot of things like presentation skills, communication, familiarity and comfort with science, etc).

My science fair project that year was about how cooking method affects the vitamin C content of vegetables. I was reading nutrition textbooks to get information about the project, and my dad noticed I was reading information I didn’t need to read for the project. Nutrition was new to me, and I was excited that it was connected to everything.

He suggested I look into jobs in nutrition, so in high school, I did a few job shadows and took a Food Science class (slightly better than a class you could take in your sleep). When I started the college search/application process, I looked at colleges that had accredited programs in nutrition.

I’ve mentioned in the post about finishing college that I went to Washington State University (earned a Bachelor of Science in Food Science and Human Nutrition, Dietetics option), and University of Washington (earned a Master of Public Health in Public Health Nutrition, through the Graduate Coordinate Program in Dietetics). These programs met the requirements for the nutrition degree and 1200 hours of supervised practice in dietetics.

In the month since graduating, I have been studying on and off for the registration exam, and took it yesterday (Feb 12). I thought it would be something that I was pretty happy about, but it turns out that the emotional reaction just wasn’t there. (I’m distracted by other things right now and was pretty tired, so that was probably why.) This goal has taken a really long time to accomplish, with many unexpected turns in the road (maybe I’ll expand that into another post later), but I have learned so much and I am grateful that I had these educational opportunities. I’m sure that as time goes by, I’ll be even more grateful when I do something in my job that I remember I learned during this time.

Many people have helped me in a variety of ways to accomplish this goal, in financial support, through prayers, emotional and social support and friendship, practical help, advice, and more. I am so, so grateful. Thank you.

If you want to be a Registered Dietitian, the best place to start is the website for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. They have a Become an RD/DTR page that helps you figure out your next steps, depending on your situation (career change, high school student, international student, etc).

If you’re looking for study materials, click here.

You can also contact me if you have questions about the experiences I had.