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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, January 1, 2009

Crowley is a dietitian on a mission

By Jordan J. Michael

GUILDERLAND –– In the past, the Guilderland YMCA had a regional dietitian stop by on a not-so-frequent basis. Now, Linda Crowley has an office in the front of the building.

“Capital Region Y’s only used to have one dietitian for all their locations,” said  Crowley M.S. R.D., a Registred Dietitian with a master’s degree. “Enough wasn’t being done. That person moved on and each location had to rely on itself.”

The Guilderland branch hired Crowley in July and she has brought the community a healthier outlook. “I volunteered with them before they hired me so I wasn’t a new face,” Crowley said. “Everyone that comes here walks by my office and I’m sure it makes them think.”

Crowley wants the community to think about a commitment to a good diet. She leads the YMCA’s popular Lose to Win program.

“We take an in-depth look at your diet and make important changes,” said Crowley. “I find that some people exercise a lot, but eat badly. I’m here to help you eat better so you can exercise better.”

Matt Mattson has participated in more than one Lose to Win session. “He keeps coming back because he wants to lose more weight. He’s very dedicated,” Crowley said.

“After turning 40, then 41, it was time to listen to the wake up call and start working towards a healthier me,” said Mattson. “I also wanted to be a better role model for my two kids and my wife. They don’t have weight problems and thought I should do something about it. My wife came home one day and told me she signed me up for the program.”

Mattson has lost 35 pounds on the Lose to Win program that includes sessions on choosing healthier foods, review of food and exercise journals, and a supermarket tour, highlighting healthy options.

“It’s all about small goals and small steps, like eating breakfast daily,” said Crowley. “Then you can focus on increasing your exercise from 20 minutes a day to 60 minutes. I also stress importance on whole grains and fiber.”

Crowley, knows the science of nutrition. “It’s important to have the R.D. next to your name, so people take you seriously,” Crowley said. “Some nutritionists that you see don’t have the correct education.”

Crowley, a mother of four, is adding a Childhood and Adolescent Weight Control Management certification to her repertoire so she can develop a program called MEfit for overweight children and a parent.

“I can relate to my patients because I’ve been overweight,” said Crowley. “I’ve lost 100 pounds over the years.”

Besides Lose to Win, Crowley is involved in the Boot Camp Club, an intense exercise program. She is also available for one-on-one consultation at the Guilderland YMCA.

“I want to stop people from focusing on the scale and make them focus on the wellness vision,” Crowley said. “Are you eating better? Are you getting enough sleep? Are you changing your habits?”

Crowley has seen weight loss in all but two of the Lose to Win participants. And she’s sure that things will get busier as the new year rolls in.

“We’re trying to improve families in the community and there have been a lot of success stories so far,” said Crowley. “I’m very pleased after I calculate my numbers.”

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