Apr 8, 2011

Nutritional Fuel

We've all heard the analogy . . . our bodies are like cars:  if we fuel our bodies correctly, they will drive efficiently for a longer period of time without residual 'crap' clogging up the tank.  If we don't have enough fuel, we go nowhere . . . if we have the incorrect fuel, we don't perform to our possible potential.

The Crossfit nutritional plan is as follows:
*  Protein should be lean and varied and account for about 30% of your total caloric load.  YUM . . . we can eat meat!
*  Carbs should be predominantly low-glycemic and account for about 40% of your total caloric load.
*  Fat should be predominantly monounsaturated and account for about 30% of your total caloric load.

Here's what you should eat:
Vegatables, lean meats, nuts and seeds, a little starch and no sugar.  I have observed that keeping your footsteps to the outside of the grocery stores, avoiding the aisles, is a great way to eat more appropriately.  Foods on the perimeter tend to be more perishable and healthier for you.

Here's what you shouldn't eat (though we hate hearing this):
Excessive consumption of high-glycemic carbs (rice, bread, candy, potato, sweets, soda, and most processed carbs) are the PRIMARY culprit for health problems such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, mood swings, etc.

My 'cut and dry' thoughts:
I wouldn't consider myself as having the best model for a well-balanced, nutritional eating plan.  I admit it . . . I enjoy certain foods!  I have a little sweet tooth and look forward to my chocolate fix every day or a little "something sweet" after my evening meal.  Here are a few suggestions that I've implemented over the years:
*  Don't eat after 8:00 p.m.  (unless you knowingly HAVE NOT gotten adequate calories that day).  Eating late at night is the easiest way to take in excess calories without even realizing it.
*  Eat 'nutritionally sound' foods FIRST and then enjoy a non-nutritionally sound food in moderation.  You will find that most of the time if you balance your food choices, you will be satisfied and one cookie will be enough (instead of the box you used to eat).
*  Eat for the nutrients it gives your body and mind.  Foods rich in sugars create joint aches and mood swings . . .
*  Eat to fuel your next crossfit workout.  We all want to perform well and see improvements in our workouts.  Without the proper nutrition, it won't happen.  Without adequate calories with good nutrients, our bodies won't recover as well and we will be digging our bodies deeper and deeper into the ground.  Eventually, we will have nothing to spare for our workouts and our performance will drop.

So, do you have to live on the "Rabbit Meal Plan" of carrots and lettuce?  No Way!  One of the reasons we workout so hard, is to enjoy eating!!!  I want to challenge you with one thought:  Before you put that "Something" into your mouth, ask yourself . . . "Will this help or hinder my next Crossfit workout?"

~ Coach Heather

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