Oh don’t we wish it was that easy! Summer is winding down and gone are the days at the pool, weekend barbecues and trips to the beach. It can be hard to focus on eating clean with endless amounts of potato salad, barbecue and beer! Before the holidays creep up on us, we are giving you guys a chance to clean up your diets for our 6 Week Fall Eating Challenge! From Sept.14-Oct. 25, we will be seeing who can get to the gym, track their food, and change their overall body composition and health the most!!!
Every person is different, and because of this no one way of eating will work the best for everyone. For this challenge you guys have the option to choose how you want to eat. Here are a few options we think might be best…
CrossFit Diet – CrossFit’s recommendation is to eat lean meats, vegetables, nuts and seed, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. This means no grains or gluten, no dairy and no desserts. Your sugar should come from your fruits or natural sources! This ties closely in with Paleo.
Paleo – The Paleo diet is fashioned after the Paleolithic Era, so you basically eat as the cavemen did! The big idea here is to eliminate processed/packaged foods and to eat real, whole, nourishing foods. The cavemen didn’t have dairy or grains as an option, so these things were not apart of their diet. There is a also a version of Paleo called Primal. With Primal, dairy is allowed. So if you must have your cream in your coffee, this may be the route for you!
Whole 30 – Whole 30 is very similar to Paleo, although a little more strict. No natural sweeteners, like honey or molasses, no recreated Paleo “goodies” and a few other restrictions mentioned here. The point of Whole 30 is to eliminate certain foods groups (sugar, grains, dairy, legumes) that cause inflammation, hormone and gut disruption, and unhealthy psychological responses to see how your body feels without them! Again, the idea is to eliminate processed/packaged foods and to eat real, whole, nourishing foods.
Zone – The Zone Diet is about balancing your macronutrients – protein, fat and carbs – at every meal. This in turns balances out your hormones as well as many other bodily functions while ensuring you’re getting proper nutrition. Most typical CrossFitting men need roughly 15 blocks a day and women need somewhere around 12 blocks, but this can be adjusted based on your goals (like fat loss vs performance).
There are several lists (here & here) that outline foods & what serving size equals one block. You’ll notice that the above meals and the lists contain some grains and dairy. While this is an option on Zone, we’re taking these out for our challenge. Again, the goal is to eliminate processed/packaged foods and to eat real, whole, nourishing foods.
When following Paleo or Whole 30, it can be helpful to keep blocks in mind. 3 Almonds is considered 1 block of fat, so when you’re grabbing a handful of almonds for a snack, you may be getting more fat than you realized. 3 cups of cooked broccoli is only 1 block of carbs. While the good news is no one ever got fat eating broccoli, you probably don’t want to eat 9 cups of broccoli to get your 3 blocks of carbs with dinner! You either need to eat more broccoli or eat some other nutrient dense carbs.
Flexible Dieting – Flexible dieting is also based off of your macronutrients, fats, carbohydrates and proteins, but instead of a block system, you count the grams of each. With flexible dieting, anything and everything is ok to eat…as long as it fits your macros, you can have it. To determine your macros, your first have to find your TDEE (or total daily energy expenditure), this is the total amount of calories you need to maintain based off of your current age, weight and activity level. Once you know this, you can then figure out your macros. Flexible dieting is all about body composition, so depending on what your goal may be, cutting mass, maintaining or gaining, you can change your percentages around. For more info on this way of eating or on how to find your macros, click here or ask Coach Stephanie or Amy!
Now that you have an idea of the types of healthy lifestyles available to you, what are the details???
The contest will run from Sept.14 – Oct. 25. The first week of the challenge, set up a time with a coach to do measurements and weigh ins. This is not required but definitely recommended (We will be taking weights and measurements into account but they won’t be the only factor for winning). We may also have the bodpod coming, but it is not confirmed yet so just watch for more details.
Each week you will have a chance to win up to 8 points, 1 for a weekly food log and1 for each day you work out, in or outside of the gym. We are recommending everyone download the MyFitnessPal app on your smart phone. You can also click here to go to their website and log on your computer. This is the easiest and most accurate way to measure your food intake. It will help you to see where you overeat and also what areas needs increasing. If your body is underfed, it can be just as problematic for weight loss and muscle gain. Another bonus, is you can easily email us your food logs and rack in those points!
At the end of the 6 weeks, we will add all the points, take a look at weight and inches lost or muscle gained and select the top 3 winners. I know, I know…get to the good part already, the swag! First Place – Your Choice of Protein AND Fish Oil, Second Place – Your Choice of Protein OR Fish Oil, and Third Place – A Box of Bars.
We are excited to see what changes you guys see and feel over the 6 weeks. We hope you will all find a lifestyle that works for you and helps motivate you through the Holidays. Always feel free to grab a coach if you have any questions! Good Luck and Clean Eating!!!