Often considered the “missing link” in sports performance, we believe nutrition can turn a good athlete into a great one. Our mission, with a food-first philosophy, is to help athletes reach their full potential in their athletic careers and beyond. 

Nutrition is an integral component to sports performance. We aim to stay at the cutting edge of research, science, and the applications of nutrition in performance to help Virginia Tech athletes maximize their potential. We believe that incorporating sound nutrition practices, in conjunction with proper training, rest, and recovery can be beneficial to ALL student-athletes. We take an individual approach to sports nutrition, utilizing the Bod Pod to more closely analyze individuals’ needs, and creating individualized meals plans catering to the athletes’ needs and goals. In addition, athletes learn to navigate some of the best dining facilities in the nation as well as local grocery stores. 

Virginia Tech Sports Nutrition emphasizes a multi-faceted approach by working seamlessly with sports medicine, sports psychology, and strength and conditioning.  We work to create a culture that supports fueling for performance, positive body image, and individualized nutrition for all 21 sport teams, all while working within NCAA rules to provide permissible supplements.

Jennie Zabinsky is the department’s director of sports nutrition. She is responsible for all nutrition and performance related concerns for varsity student-athletes including individual counseling, team talks, body composition analysis using the Bod Pod, recovery nutrition plans, grocery store tours, training table menu planning, travel meal arrangements, managing the Nutrition Oasis and Fueling Station, and supplement education.

Zabinsky is in her fourth year as director. She worked as the sports nutrition graduate assistant under former director Amy Freel before being hired as director. Zabinsky also directs the nutrition and performance committee at Tech.

Education: Roanoke College, 2005 (B.A., in sociology) while playing basketball for four years; Virginia Tech, 2009 (B.S., in human nutrition, foods and exercise: dietetics option); Virginia Tech, 2010 (dietetic internship); Virginia Tech, 2012 (master of arts in education).

Of Note: She is a member of the Collegiate and Professional Sports Dietitians Association (CPSDA).

Family: A native of Centreville, Va., Zabinsky currently lives in Christiansburg.

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