“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.” (CrossFit Journal, September 2002, “The Garage Gym”)
The food we consume has a direct and immediate effect on how we perform in the gym! It also effects the amount of energy we have to get through the day, whether it be at work, at home or anywhere else life takes us. We can’t stress enough that you should be eating foods that support exercise and daily nutritional needs, rather than foods for that are eaten for comfort and emotional needs. There are a number of delicious foods that your body is designed to breakdown and use for fuel, and they do not included grains, dairy or high glycemic foods. If you don’t know which foods are high on the glycemic index, please read this 2 page article from the CrossFit Journal – GlycemicNov02.
There are 2 different approaches to nutrition that we recommend in CrossFit–the Zone and Paleo. The difference between the two is quite simple, the Zone focuses more on the amount of food while Paleo is more focused on the quality of food. We will not pretend to be experts on the Zone Diet but it uses a 40% Carbs, 30% Protein and 30% Fat model, which helps keep macro nutrients in balance. There’s a special emphasis in reducing harmful inflammation, which increases disease states and promotes weight gain. Please visit here for more information on The Zone Diet.
The Paleo Diet, or Caveman Diet, requires that we eat lean meats, nuts and seeds, vegetables and some fruit, little starch, and NO sugar. Unlike the Zone, there is no weighing or measuring your food only choosing foods listed above to meet your fuel requirements for the day.
The seven keys of the Paleo diet according to Loren Cordain, Ph.D:
Eat a relatively high amount of animal protein compared to that in the typical American diet.
Eat fewer carbohydrates than most modern diets recommend, but eat lots of good carbohydrates from fruits and vegetables, not from grains or refined sugars.
Eat a large amount of fiber from non-starchy fruits and vegetables.
Eat a moderate amount of fat, with more good (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated) fats than bad (saturated) fats, and nearly equal amounts of omega 3 and omega 6 fats.
Eat foods with a high potassium content and low sodium content.
Eat a diet with a net alkaline load.
Eat foods rich in plant phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
The seven keys optimize health, minimize the risk of chronic disease, and cause excess weight to be lost. After all, this is the way we’re genetically programmed to eat.
Here are a few good websites to learn more about the Paleo Diet:
Here’s CrossFit’s take on nutrition –
We know that this is a lot of information and we understand that the quest for optimal health, especially in the nutrition realm, is always changing and endlessly updated. If you have any questions at all, please ask any one of the Templar trainers or athletes as we are all learning together!