The athletes of Stillwater Area High School are gleaning lessons this summer from a different kind of playbook.

The 800-plus students have been meeting with Susan Crowell, a dietitian at Lakeview Hospital, to learn ways to eat better to boost performance and stay healthy.

The lessons are contained in a six-page guide entitled the PowerUp Sports Nutrition Playbook.

PowerUp also is the name of a communitywide youth-health initiative that is based in Stillwater and funded by the Lakeview Foundation in partnership with HealthPartners.

The Stillwater Area Public Schools said in a news release that this year marks the first in which all athletes are being required to take the nutrition class.

“This program has become a huge opportunity for athletes to learn about their bodies, nutrition and healthy lifestyles,” head football coach Beau LaBore was quoted as saying. “Susan’s passion for the PowerUp mission is contagious. She has had a meaningful impact on many of our young athletes — one that could last a lifetime.”

The nutrition playbook is available at the district’s website at www.stillwater.k12.mn.us and is noteworthy for its emphasis on carbohydrates. According to the guide, 50 to 65 percent of calories consumed by athletes should come from carbs — often the bane of other diet plans.

Even for athletes who want to lose weight, the advice is clear: “Don’t restrict carbohydrates; you need them for energy,” it states.

The guide also offers recommendations on the amount of calories to consume for athletes in endurance and in high intensity, power and strength sports. The former includes running and skiing, and the latter includes soccer, volleyball, basketball and football.

Advice on how to hydrate properly is included, too. Coffee lovers may be discouraged but there is good news for kids who like chocolate milk.

“When you wrap up your tough workout with low fat chocolate milk, you win,” according to a new release about a Wisconsin study that also can be downloaded from the district’s website. “That’s because it has the right combination of protein and carbs to help you refuel, and the fluid and electrolytes it takes to help you restore what’s lost in sweat.”

Stillwater Area High, in fact, plans to offer chocolate milk and fruit juices as “healthy drink alternatives” this year, the district said.

District 833

Information session planned for board hopefuls

Community members who want to get a feel for what it’s like to be a South Washington County school board member are being invited to a candidate information session on Aug. 6.

Three board seats are up for election this fall. They currently are held by Ron Kath, Joe Slavin and Michelle Witte.

The filing period for the four-year seats runs from July 28 through Aug. 11.

The Aug. 6 candidate information session will begin at 5:15 p.m. in the boardroom at the district service center, 7362 East Point Douglas Road S., Cottage Grove. Affidavits of candidacy are available at the district service center. The filing fee for the office is $2.

South Washington County also is expected to have questions on this year’s ballot involving funding for school operations and building projects.

According to a presentation to school board members on July 16, 61 percent of residents surveyed in June support a proposal for middle school projects and 64 percent back high school and elementary school improvements.

Proposals to raise operating revenue by $700 or $900 per pupil ran into trouble, however, “not because of the high quality people see in the education system, but because the costs to taxpayers would be too high,” the district said in a news release.

Less than one-third of respondents would support the full array of revenue and building projects, the district said.

In August, the school board will decide what questions to put on the ballot.

Anthony Lonetree