The “Actual” Crossfitter’s Diet

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If you haven’t been under a rock, then you have heard about or even seen the sport of Crossfit. This fitness phenomenon has swept the nation giving regular everyday people the chance to train in a performance driven environment while preparing them for the unknown and unknowable. Many people have taken the gospel of crossfit as law and there have been marketing schemes that have made tons of money from crossfit enthusiasts due to lack of knowledge. While injury in crossfit is prevalent and can be due to a number of factors, the nutrition program sponsored by crossfit has been detrimental to athletes and there is a disconnect in how the competitors of the sport fuel themselves compared to crossfit enthusiasts.

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The Paleo diet has been popularized by crossfit and the premise of the diet is to adopt the fueling patterns of ancient people. Rob Wolff states that “The Paleo diet is the healthiest way you can eat because it is the ONLY nutritional approach that works with your genetics to help you stay lean, strong and energetic! Research in biology, biochemistry, Ophthalmology, Dermatology and many other disciplines indicate it is our modern diet, full of refined foods, trans fats and sugar, that is at the root of degenerative diseases such as obesity, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, depression and infertility”.

While some of his claims hold validity, Wolff forgets that Crossfit is a PERFORMANCE based training program and sport. In order to perform you have to have energy, and the paleo diet is lacking the number one source you need to perform your best. This source my friend is CARBS. YES……….. YES carbohydrates. “The roles of carbohydrate in the body includes providing energy for working muscles, providing fuel for the central nervous system, enabling fat metabolism, and preventing protein from being used as energy. Carbohydrate is the preferred source of energy or fuel for muscle contraction and biologic work.” The RIGHT carbs, which are complex and take time to digest such as rice, sweet potatoes, and various grains, is the coal to your steam engine of a body.

Without the presence of carbs you will begin to feel sluggish, be at risk for ketosis (which is an abnormal amount of ketones in the bloodstream) and most importantly you will be less alert. Since Crossfit is nothing more than taking very good attributes from various sports, it would seem that the nutrition patterns of top athletes in these sports should have been adopted too right?

So What REALLY Happens Then?

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If you are confused as to why the top athletes in crossfit look starkly different compared to the thousands of enthused participants of the sport, I have an idea and NO it is not steroids. (Although everyone wants to go straight to the “juice”). What happens is that while crossfit supports the paleo diet but the competitors for the most part have a completely different diet that consists of a ton of carbs, which are not bad, but help these athletes have the energy to perform at a high level. You will see athletes although the names consume large amounts of peanut  butter sandwiches, rice, and even bad carbs such as donuts, sweet cereal and even fries to ensure that they are fueled for their competition. Now this doesn’t mean to scrap your diet and head to the nearest burger king, cut it shows that carbs play a huge role in how you perform and gives you the energy to perform.

Side Note- When you are in a constant fatigued state, as the sport of crossfire perpetuates, there is a technique breakdown in performance. This can and has lead to serious injury within the sport. Understand that what you put in your body is vitally important to your performance and health!!

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While protein and fats are extremely good for the human body, their primary role is to aid in recovery from training- not to fuel training. Only when you have a surplus of carbs will you begin to gain unwanted weight, and as a crossfitter that will be difficult given that you train frequently. If you have been on the paleo diet, add a few sweet potatoes in the mix and watch how better you improve. Just a little food for thought.

-Swxller

References
Costill, D.L., Miller, J.M. Nutrition for endurance sport: Carbohydrate and fluid balance. Int. J. Sports. Med. 1980;1:2-14.
Coyle, E.F., and Coyle, E.L Carbohydrates that speed recovery from training. Phys. Sportsmed., 1993;21:111.
Esbjornsson-Liljedahl, M. Sundberg, C.J., Norman , B., and Jansson, E. Metabolic response in type I and type II muscle fibers during a 30-s cycle sprint in men and women. J Appl Physiol 1999;87:1326-1332.

The Power of The Knife and Fork: Part 1

Put The Pop Tarts AWAY

Family,

After our slight “Come to Jesus Meeting” last week, its time to bring you in and coach you up on the most important factor in changing your life: NUTRITION.

First and foremost we don’t say DIET here..period. Your nutrition has to be in direct correlation to your fitness and health goals. Instead of using the word diet we will use the word FUEL. Think about this: If you bought a new Ashton Martin tomorrow (my personal favorite) would you drive your nice shiny new car to the “Cona Sto'” and use 87?? HELL No!! You would damn near go to the dealership to gas that car up with jet fuel if you could. Well if this is the case .. and don’t lie you would lol, why do you do the same with your food?

I’m sad to say that with all the trolls on instagram, you tube, and all of the internet, the overload of faulty nutrition information can be overwhelming and very costly. Everywhere you turn there is a new pill, potion, butt lifter, waist corset, powder.. ehh you get my drift. Here at The Swxller Company we stick to the basics and inform our athletes to the secret of nutrition

Which is…..

NUTRIENT DENSITY

So what is nutrient density? Nutrient density refers to the nutrient quality of the food you are eating on a daily basis. Our bodies haven’t changed in over 100,000 years however we seem to believe that we can cheat the system with processed foods, GMO’s, and the almighty 99 cent menu. Well we are here to tell you that if you do not fuel your body with the proper nutrients you are literally eating yourself into an early grave. Dun Dun…. pretty scary right??

Lets keep this thing simple, if you want to increase your nutrient density you need to eat less CRAP and eat more FOOD

Eat less CRAP:

C – Carbonated Drinks
R – Refined Sugar
A – Artificial Sweeteners and Artificial Colors
P – Processed Foods
Eat more FOOD:

F – Fruits and Vegetables
O – Organic Lean Proteins
O – Omega 3 Fatty Acids
D – Drink Water

Solutions

C- It doesn’t matter if its diet, zero, whatever… if you want to increase your performance you will use coke for its true purpose taking the corrosion off of your battery

R- The sugar you eat should come from your fruits

A- YouTube the effects of aspartame.. thank me later

P- If you can’t grow it or kill it.. you probably shouldn’t be eating it

Food-

F- Eat the Rainbow- your fruits and vegetables should be in a variety of colors. From a boost in immunity, to increased musculature and heart health, each color has a specific purpose to not only heal but reverse the effects of any harm that the CRAP has caused to your body

Want to know more? Check out this article

November 2008 Issue

Color Me Healthy — Eating for a Rainbow of Benefits
By Juliann Schaeffer
Today’s Dietitian
Vol. 10 No. 11 P. 34

O- “The Less Legs the Better” always follow this rule in choosing your meats. Cold water fish such as salmon and trout are a very good start. Also be sure to seek out the hunting and fishing community to get information on grass-fed and wild game that haven’t had access to processed grains and vegetables.

O- If you don’t have fish oil in your cabinet, shame on you haha.. don’t take our word for it , lets see what Dr. Frank Sacks, Professor of Cardiovascular Disease Prevention, Department of Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health has to say.

“Omega-3 fatty acids (also known as n-3 fatty acids) are polyunsaturated fatty acids that are essential nutrients for health. We need omega-3 fatty acids for numerous normal body functions, such as controlling blood clotting and building cell membranes in the brain, and since our bodies cannot make omega-3 fats, we must get them through food. Omega-3 fatty acids are also associated with many health benefits, including protection against heart disease and possibly stroke. New studies are identifying potential benefits for a wide range of conditions including cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, and other autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.”

D- DRINK WATER.. a lot of it… all the time.. We won’t tell you again.. if it’s not a gallon per day you are playing yourself

Thats it this week!! Tune in next week for part two as we deep dive into nutrition.

Feed the Wolf

Minor Bowens, CSCS, USAW

The Swxller Co.