Vancouver Athlete Isabella Bertold Launches Cookbook

We chatted with the sailing champion to find out about her dietary regime. Spoiler alert: it’s not just about the protein shakes.

July 2, 2015

By Julie Kanhnha / Photo: David Ellingsen

Did you know most amateur athletes are personally responsible for fundraising to get themselves to the Olympic games? Knowing that it’ll take more than a car wash or a bake sale to get her to Rio de Janeiro in 2016, sailor Isabella Bertold has combined entrepreneurial spirit and athleticism with the release of her ‘athlete’s cookbook.’

Released today, Eat, Sleep, Shvitz! promises ‘food, fitness, and wisdom from a chocolate-obsessed athlete’, providing insights in to Bertold’s personal diet and recipes she uses around the house. A senior Canadian national athlete since 2004, Bertold currently ranks eighth in the world in the Laser Radial one-sail boat category, and has qualified for the Olympic Test Event this summer, with dreams of reaching the 2016 games in Brazil.

Bertold is hoping to fundraise $15,000 from the cookbook, which will be added to her existing sponsorship funds from the government, private investors and donations.

Why a cookbook? Being an athlete, you are always asked what you eat, this is going to put into perspective what an actual athlete eats – it will definitely break some stereotypes!

How did you develop these recipes? I love things like Pinterest, I get inspiration from there by looking at what people make. I can’t take credit for every recipe – they are not all my recipes, but they all have my little touch in them.

Is your diet different when you are in training? It’s all about everything in moderation and living a balanced life; if your body is craving something – even if you are in the middle of competition season – you eat. It is easier to eat healthy by making it a lifestyle and not by forcing yourself to eat healthy.

Besides chocolate, what’s your favourite food? My favorite foods are bananas, peanut butter, and pizza. Since I am allergic to wheat, I use brown rice flour to make my pizza dough.

Something you are addicted to? I love matcha, but I recently discovered kombucha and I am a little addicted to it right now – especially when it’s hot out.

Ingredients you always have in your kitchen? I always have coconut oil, cinnamon, and honey in my kitchen. I also always have oat, eggs, fruits, and vegetables and plain yogurt in my fridge. I actually buy my meat and fish daily, since I prefer it fresh.

Favorite cookbook? I absolutely love all three volumes of the Whitewater Cooks.

Is there a recipe you could share with us that didn’t make it into the cookbook? Yes! Here is one I wished made it in: lamb with polenta, zucchini, and tomato (view this recipe here).

Eat, Sleep, Shvitz! Food, fitness, and wisdom from a chocolate obsessed athlete is available for purchase online starting July 2, 2015.

For an autographed copy, email your order at

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