Document Type


Date of Degree Completion

Spring 2021

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair

Kelly Pritchett

Second Committee Member

Dana Ogan

Third Committee Member

Abigail Larson


The prevalence of eating disorders in athletes is higher than in the general population. Various training styles, weight periodization, and presence of eating disorder (ED) may affect energy availability. This study investigated the relationship between lifetime prevalence of ED with training, body satisfaction, and weight-control methods among elite female endurance athletes. Female runners who participated in the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials Marathon completed an online questionnaire examining training volume, weight-control methods, and self-reported current or past ED. Questions 1-19 were analyzed for this investigation. Participants were grouped according to responses on presence of ED. Thirty-two percent of participants reported previous ED diagnosis and 6% reported current ED. Runners who reported ED were significantly more likely to experience weight dissatisfaction and report energy restriction in the three months prior to the marathon. Consistent with previous literature, a substantial percentage of participants reported ED. This investigation suggests that ED may affect weight control methods and increase feelings of body dissatisfaction in competitive female runners.