Nancy Clark

Nancy Clark

Born 1951

Nancy Clark. Courtesy of Nancy Clark.

Raised in the ”summer-folks” neighborhood of Warren’s Point, Nancy is a native Little Compton year-rounder.  She attended Wilbur School grades 1-4, then Friends Academy grades 5-9. She holds fond summer memories of sharing her house with her cousins Sally and Jane Stowell who came in July and August from Agawam, MA. Along with Nancy’s sister Susan, they’d spend hours on Warren’s Point Beach (peeling skin from each other’s back after the first  rite-of summer sunburn; jumping off the S’no Bluff), playing “Red Rover” in the back yard, and enjoying the horse show as much as the food at the annual Chicken Barbeque held at Veterans Field. 

When old enough, Nancy was a full-time babysat for the summer neighbors (Thayers, Chases, and Truslows). She baked apple pies for the bakery near Walker’s vegetable stand and passed hors d’ouvres at the Stone House cocktail parties when the opportunity arose. She was a local, a worker, as opposed to a out-of-towner here on summer vacation.

In tenth grade, Nancy went away to Northfield School (currently Northfield Mt. Hermon), and then to Simmons College where she majored in Nutrition. She went on complete an internship in dietetics at the Massachussetts General Hospital, and then a bit later earned her master’s degree in Nutrition with a focus on exercise physiology from Boston University. As one of the first sports nutritionists in the USA, Nancy worked hard to establish sports nutrition as a viable career option. Her career included not only counseling athletes of all ages and abilities at her offices in Brookline and then Newton, but also giving workshops nationwide and internationally, teaching other registered dietitians how to teach the sports nutrition message. She consulted with the Boston Celtics Basketball team and the Bruins Hockey team early in her career and served as the team nutritionist for the Boston Red Sox for three years (2014 to 2017). She has been honored with several achievement awards, as well as has had her photo and nutrition tips on the back of the Wheaties box.

Nancy’s first book, The Athlete’s Kitchen, was published in 1983. That book morphed into Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook in 1990. About 750,000 copies later—including many translations into other languages, the book’s Sixth Edition was published in 2019. She also has written Food Guides for marathoners, new runners, cyclists and soccer players.

Nancy remained in the Boston-area after college to grow her career. She met her husband John McGrath, got married in the LC Congregational Church in 1986, and raised their two children (Mary and John Michael) in Newton. They all loved coming to LC as often as possible to visit “Grammie” (Janice Clark).

Nancy has enjoyed living an active lifestyle, including leading a TransAmerica bicycle tour from Oregon to Virgina, running marathons in Berlin and Davos, trekking in the Himalayas, and bike touring in Canada and Europe. She still enjoys running the Little Compton Road Race, of which she has been a winner in her age group, riding with the Sakonnet Cyclists, and playing tennis and paddle tennis.

Like Nancy, both of her children consider Little Compton their true home, as that is where they have made many family memories (Thanksgivings, Easters, birthdays, hurricanes, family reunions, church fairs, and back yard barbeques). Nancy continues to split her time between Newton and LC. Nancy is on the Board of Trustees for the Friends of Sakonnet Lighthouse, and an active member of the Little Compton Garden Club. Sooner or later, she will retire in LC and enjoy spending more time gardening, cycling, playing paddle tennis, and giving back to the community.

I am from…

I am from Warren’s Point, with fun-filled summers abundant with playful cousins and neighbors to quiet winters with just an older couple across the street.

From the Wilbur School, Friends Academy, and Northfield School for Girls to Simmons College Nutrition Department and Boston University Nutrition & Exercise Science Departments.

From Summer jobs of babysitting for summer families and passing hors d’ouvres at the Stone House, to babysitting in Scotland and Spain, and waitressing at Yellowstone Park.

From Red Rover and tag to paddle tennis and biking with the Sakonnet Cyclists.

From The Mill Stone and Sunderland’s to the Common’s Lunch and Gray’s Ice Cream.

From adventure travels of a bicycle trip from Oregon to Virginia, to trekking in the Himalayas, and running marathons in Berlin and Davos.

From living with friends in in group houses to getting married and creating a family with John McGrath.

From developing a new career as a sports nutritionist to having my photo on the back of Wheaties box, to being team nutritionist for the Boston Red Sox.

From writing The Athlete’s Kitchen to rewriting Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook for six editions, and many translations.

From being foot loose and fancy free to being blessed with motherhood and learning the true meaning of “pride and joy” while watching John Michael and Mary grow into viable adults.

From being a Yankee, descended from the Mayflower, to instilling a love of Little Compton into the next generation.

From growing up with Save the Bay and Keep Little Compton Little to wanting this town to remain a special place in all of our hearts.

Nancy Clark

April 2020


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One thought on “Nancy Clark

  1. So fascinating! She is basically responsible for a career choice that so many people, especially now, are engaged in. Thank you Ms. Clark.

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