Hi, I’m Daniel! I’m a nutritional sciences undergraduate student at the University of Wisconsin – Madison and amateur athlete. I’m fascinated by the inner workings of the human body and how we can maximize its performance through changes that we can make in our daily lifestyle.
I wasn’t always interested in people or athletics. On the contrary, my time in high school was dominated by the virtual fantasies of computers. Instead of living in the real world, I spent my time living in the clouds of the internet. Going into college I didn’t know what I was interested in besides spending time with virtual friends and eating food in front of a monitor. With solid grades in math and sciences I figured I would just become an engineer. I could figure out the details later…
That’s me; the summer before college!
Overweight and out of shape, in my first week of college I decided to try out a workout club that I had heard about, November Project – Madison. Maybe, just maybe, if the workout was tolerable I would keep going and drop some of those 188 lbs that I had to carry around all day. Little did I know that attending that workout group would permanently change the direction of my life. It wasn’t quick and it wasn’t easy, but the November Project surrounded me with people interested in making true human connections. Surrounded by fit and encouraging individuals, I began to dip my toes into running and by my first winter in Madison, I was able to run my first 5K race.
As any runner knows, when you finish your first race, your mind only begins to search for the next challenge. As events came and went, my training increased and so too did my curiosity for the inside workings of the human body. How can we as humans make changes in our training to maximize our performance in athletics? I searched the depths of the internet for the information I was looking for, however, the more I searched the more questions I was able to come up with. It was an endless cycle.
A year after the first 5K, I ran my first marathon!
As I continued to train I also had to maintain my attendance at the introductory engineering classes that I was taking at the time. Being surrounded by engineers in labs and classes I realized that maybe that wasn’t the right atmosphere for me. I wasn’t the type of person who could work well in a large team of engineers who all wanted a project to go in the direction they wanted. In fact, I wasn’t really interested in manufacturing projects at all. In search of a new direction for my academic career I began to realize that maybe my hobbies didn’t just need to be extracurricular, and I could merge my newfound love for training and athletics with a course of study. With this realization I stumbled upon the field of nutritional science. This major would allow me to learn about the inner workings of the body with a focus on the metabolic pathways of food.
Since sophomore year, I have continued to study nutritional science and the more I explore the field the more I realize how much we have yet to learn. Aside from my interest in the areas of athletic performance I have also become fascinated with the uses of food in medicine. In my opinion, western medicine such as that of the United States puts all of its focus on the treatment of symptoms using pharmaceutical agents. However, what we spend far less time on, is using natural methods for healing and prevention. With the right eating habits and education we can use food as a vaccine and medicine for common chronic illness in the United States.
On my current day to day schedule, between the hours of 8:30am and 4:00pm I have the privilege of learning about how the human body works from some of the smartest individuals in the state of Wisconsin. However, I supplement that learning with even more information from the constant experiments I am running in my own lab. The lab opens after school hours are over, and closes immediately before classes begin for the day. No, my lab doesn’t have a state of the art facility with the latest gadgets and gizmos. Nor do I have a fancy white lab coat with safety goggles protecting my eyes from dangerous chemicals. With such a description you are probably wondering what kind of second rate laboratory I could be running in the first place. However, my lab comes from me, the greatest experimental subject that I could find. Each and every day in my life and training I am able to employ the practice that I learn from my studies and in my free time. In my lab I can figure out the best practices for my own life, and perhaps share a bit of that with the rest of the world.
Entering the world of triathlon in 2018, I completed an ironman 70.3!
So that brings me to why I am here, on this website. Perhaps through my life and experiences I can share a bit of insight with the rest of the world and in the process make some new connections.
Please feel free to reach out to me if you would like to learn anything beyond this abbreviated summary of my college career.