The starting point is: Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch, and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat.
If you were to go to your doctor’s office and tell them, “I’m going to try this revolutionary new diet. I’m going to eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch, and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat.” What do you think the doctor would tell you? They’d probably ask “…. and what were you doing before?”
This concept of eating real foods and eating amounts that are appropriate for your activity and lifestyle is not foreign. The relationship we have with food is complicated and usually tied to an emotional response; therefore, any changes to your diet should be gradual, convenient, and fit your needs.
The average American diet consumes a large amount of carbohydrates. That is why there are words like “some” fruit, “little” starch, and “no” sugar.
These starches, fruits, and sugars are metabolized and either converted to energy for your body to use immediately or converted to fat to be stored for energy later.
This is a vast simplification of the biochemistry taking place in your body, but works as a model for how fat is created in the body. CrossFit’s goal is to get you “off the carbs and off the couch.”
This is in response to the type II diabetes and chronic disease that is an epidemic throughout the U.S. Carbohydrates are important to human function; however, when consumed at high rates and low activity, it is a breeding ground for chronic disease.
Simple Guidelines to Get You Started
1. Eat Quality Foods – Most of us have heard the adage to “shop around the outside of the grocery store.” This is where the quality foods are. Limiting the amount of sodas, candy, fast food, and alcohol we consume will have a grand effect on our body composition, mood, and overall health.
2. Eat a Meal Every 3-5 Hours – If we look at our metabolism in the analogy of a campfire, it is important to keep throwing logs onto the fire.
3. Eat a Protein, Carb, and Fat Source at Every Meal – Proteins, carbs, and fats in combination are the logs that fuel the fire. If you throw just one of these into the fire, it’s like throwing pine straw on the fire. Keep your fire burning; keep your energy throughout the day. Simple snack ideas that encompass a protein, carb, and fat source: a couple pieces of sliced turkey, an apple, and a handful of cashews.
To optimize health and fitness, you will need to measure and record intake, evaluate performance and potentially change intake until the desired results are achieved. This approach to diet is no different than the CrossFit approach to workouts. We record scores and take a scientific approach to measuring your fitness. Why would we not do this for nutrition?
The goal is to optimize level of intake with the amount of exercise and activity in your day. This is different for every individual. Our coaches can help dial in what will work for you. MyFitnessPal has been a resource that has helped many athletes in our gym to track their intake
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Interesting Articles and YouTube videos to further the discussion