CrossFit Charlottesville is hosting our fifteenth Nutrition Challenge! This event is open to the public, so come redefine your relationship with food, learn how to cook again, and get in shape before the summer! If you plan to participate in the Nutrition Challenge, you need to read this entire post.
At 1:00 PM on April 9 we will host our Nutrition Challenge Kick-off at the gym. Anyone, member or non-member, is welcome to participate; all you have to do is bring $20 in cash for the prize pool. Here are the results from our past challenges:
- Changing Member Lives: 8 Weeks of Paleo/Primal Eating and Strength Training with Result Pictures
- Second Nutrition Challenge: 8 Weeks of Paleo + Primal Eating and CrossFit Training with Result Pictures
- Third Nutrition Challenge: Paleo Eating Before and After Pictures
- Fourth Nutrition Challenge: Paleo & Zone-ish Eating for 8 Week Before and After Pictures
- Fifth Nutrition Challenge: Paleo Nutrition and Zone Guidelines for 8 Weeks Before and After Result Pictures
- Fall 2012 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Spring 2013 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Fall 2013 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Spring 2014 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Fall 2014 Lurong Paleo Challenge Results
- Spring 2015 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Fall 2015 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Spring 2016 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
- Fall 2016 Nutrition Challenge Results, Before and After Photos, and Winners
Food is fuel, and in order to fully achieve your health, performance, and body image goals, you need to dial in your nutrition. Unfortunately, exercise alone will not do the trick, and there is no such thing as out-training a bad diet. Here are three great resources about proper nutrition written by our very own trainers from CrossFit Charlottesville:
- Nutrition Resources and Summary
- Nutrition Basics for Health and Performance
- Zone Diet for Health, Performance and CrossFit
Nutrition Challenge Rules
- Consult your doctor before you make any nutrition changes.
- You must bring $20 in cash to the meeting on Sunday in order to participate. The money will be used as a prize pool for the winner.
- If you want to enter the Nutrition Challenge, follow the guidelines exactly. There are no exceptions or “cheat” meals.
- It starts Monday, April 10 and ends after 6 Weeks (May 20).
- Phase 1 (4/10-4/16): In the first week, you’ll get adjusted to eating paleo – this will be a period to ask questions and get some experience with shopping and cooking for paleo eating (tracking optional during this period).
- Phase 2 (4/17-5/7): For this 3-week phase, you will be tracking all of your daily food intake. You will need a food scale (relatively inexpensive and can be found at many stores in the area). See below on calculating how much you should be eating.
- Phase 3 (5/8-5/20): During the final 2-week phase of the nutrition challenge, tracking your macro intake will be optional, and you can start to add back in some of those “grey-area” foods. Around this time we will meet to take final measurements.
- At 1:00 PM on April 9, we will have a brief meeting to talk about the challenge and answer any questions you have. We will then take waist/hip measurements as well as bodyweight. We will also take a picture of you showing your mid-section. The winner will be the one who shows the best body recomposition (more lean muscle mass and less fat). We will also factor in how well you performed during the actual challenge. Men will go shirtless for the photo, and women will be asked to wear a sports bra.
- During the tracking phase (Phase 2), you must email or print out your information for us to review (we will provide information with online trackers you can use – such as MyFitnessPal, Paleotrack, etc.).
- Emphasize naturally-raised, organic, and pastured food as much as possible. Shop at Whole Foods, the Farmers’ Market, and the C’ville Market, or other places that provide local, fresh options. Avoid processed food-like substances in the aisles by sticking to the perimeter of the grocery store.
- Good: local, organic, or pastured meats and eggs, wild-caught fish, local or organic vegetables and berries, oils like coconut or olive oil.
- Grey area: full-fat grass-fed milk and butter, whey protein, full-fat Greek yogurt
- Bad: processed sugar, gluten, grains, alcohol, soda (even diet).
- Supplements: fish oil (5 to 8 grams daily), multi-vitamin, vitamin D (5,000 IU per day), creatine (3 to 6 grams daily)
Intro to Calculating How Much to Eat
- Take your body weight and subtract fat mass. For example, if you weigh 150# and have about 20% body fat, you have 120# of lean body mass. We recommend visiting Complete Nutrition on Barracks Road and using their InBody body composition analyzer to get a better estimate. You can visit them any time during their open hours and use their scale!
- Everyone will start out by eating 1 gram of protein per pound of lean body mass (our example would eat 120 grams of protein per day). Based on general Zone guidelines, divide that number by 7 to estimate fat and carb macronutrient blocks. This gives us 17 blocks for our example.
- Multiply by 9 for carbs and by 3 for fat; so roughly 150 grams of carbs and 50 grams of fat (which we will tweak later on in the challenge). This is not purely a science, but rather it is just a starting benchmark.
- If you are looking to shed fat dramatically, you probably need to be eating under 150-100 grams of carbs per day. Under 50 carbs per day and you are going to be lethargic and your performance will decrease. You need to experiment, track, and dial things in based on your specific needs. We will also help you plan meals around your workouts to make sure you are fueling your body properly.