Since opening in 2011, we have run an annual 6-10 week nutrition challenge. And every year it proves to be the most powerful and positive-result yielding nutrition protocol we have. It’s more powerful than personal nutrition coaching, fancy apps, video blogs, or recipe books. And it’s all because of the “challenge mindset” of just 6 weeks, the group support, and camaraderie.
I talk a lot about consistency in the gym. Because it’s important! Someone who is consistant with basic guidelines will have way better results at the end of the year vs. the person who did hardcore keto for 3 months and then went on vacation and gained it all back plus a little more. (I see this scenario play out every year several times, just replace “keto” with whatever the fad is for the year) And this goes the same with your performance. The person who sticks to their level and gradually improves 4-5 x a week will see way more progression than the person who comes in 1-2x a week and tries to hit brown level every time but never finishes a workout in time and is too sore to make it the other 3-4 days. These are the issues we set out to fix for our members this year.
It starts with the Crossfit Hierarchy of training. This is a pyramid that lists out nutrition, metabolic conditioning, gymnastics, weightlifting, and sport in that order. Nutrition at the base, meaning you can’t do anything in fitness effectively without a nutrition plan. After your nutrition plan is solid, you can start working your metabolic conditioning. Once you can move around without feeling like you’re gonna throw up, we can start to move our bodies through different planes of motion like sit ups, pullups, squats, and lunges…we call that gymnastics. Once you can handle the bodyweight movement we start to add external weight such as barbell, kettlebell, and other weighted exercises. And once you have all these modalities in place you can “compete” in sport effectively. Which could mean that Spartan race you’ve been wanting to try, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Crossfit competitions, or finally knock out that big mountain hike you’ve been wanting to accomplish. Sport does not mean professional athlete. Life is a sport. And it’s being able to perform the unknown and unknowable due to your training program that makes it possible.
On the nutrition side of the equation we also have many levels. Everyone knows that one person who switched their sodas to green tea and lost 30lbs. Guess what? They were probably drinking 100+ grams of sugar a day. So, of course, when that went away it made a positive result. While that may have been the fastest, easiest, and best diet protocol for that person at the time, it’s not going to work forever or for everyone. I haven’t drank a soda since ‘98, and I still tend to gain a few lbs over the holidays like everyone else. What I’m getting at is that all diets work……..they just need to be applied correctly and the right time and for the right person. So just like the Hierarchy of fitness model, we built a progressive nutrition model to couple with it. These protocols include elimination/detox, whole foods and micro nutrients, balancing Macros, and advanced. Each diet builds on to the next. We start with elimination and detox diet to reset your gut health. This protocol takes a very bland eating plan for 3 weeks and then journals the effects as you add foods back in one at a time for 2-3 days. This allows you to see which foods you tolerate best. We couple the elimination with detox because if you’re already eating restricted you might as well add a few herbs, foods, and supplements that can aid in ridding your body of toxins such as metals, molds, plastics, and EMF’s. After the gut is squeaky clean and you know what foods to avoid for future meal prep, we can start to focus on making sure we are incorporating all macro and micro nutrients in a balanced manner as well as getting in tune with natural hunger cues and giving our metabolism a boost. Then we can start to really dial in the Macronutrients by giving you an exact prescription of calories, protein, carbs, and fats as well as nutrient timing specifics (anabolic window of gainz anyone?) And the final step would be more advanced protocols like how to eat for competition, intermittent fasting, supplementation, and other extreme style diets such as carb cycling or keto that can give specific aesthetic or performance results. One builds on the next and if you try to jump into keto when all you need is to quit the sodas, you’re setting yourself up for failure and most likely the yo-yo dieting pitfall. Just like the hierarchy says you can’t train weights before you mastered your body weight, your macro count wont do anything if your gut is unhealthy and can’t turn it into the fuel you need.
Once we had our performance and nutrition goals set out for the gym we designed a way to incorporate everything into an easy to follow, highly motivating, habit based, annual challenge to give you the most consistent year of fitness and the fittest version of yourself. There will be 4 quarterly nutrition challenges coupled with excursions and recovery packages. Here’s what they look like:
- Jan. 20th – Feb. 28th “Clean Slate Steady State”
- Elimination/detox diet to repair gut health and eliminate toxins.
- Coupled with aerobic conditioning. We will be providing a 6 week aerobic capacity training program designed to improve aerobic capacity while still hitting your WOD’s at the gym.
- April 20th – May 29th – “Plates and Planks”
- This diet will be based on a plate or hand system that focuses on the balance or Proteins, veggies, carbs, and fats with each meal and a variety of foods for micronutrient balance.
- Coupled with a twice a week gymnastic excursion with our certified in house gymnast coach, Randy Miller.
- July 20th – Aug. 28th – “Gain Train”
- This diet will take your current weight, bf%, and muscle mass goals to deliver an exact protocol of calories, proteins, carbs, and fats to track and follow daily.
- This diet will be coupled with your strength training with a twice a week lifting excursion with our USAW certified in house weightlifting coach, Josh Luna.
- Oct. 19th- November 27th. “In it to win it”
- This Diet will touch on sport specific protocols such as nutrient timing, intermittent fasting, supplementation, and advanced diets like Carb cycling and Keto.
- This will be coupled perfectly with a couple in house clinics for the sport of crossfit (kipping pullups, barbell cycling, gameplanning, heart rate monitoring, etc) and our big annual in house competition BROVEMBER.
If your looking to have something there to hold you accountable year round on nutrition. If you want to 10x your fitness by this time next year. And you want something thats attainable AND won’t break the bank. Our 2020 consistency challenge is for you! The first challenge starts in just a couple weeks! Watch for an email coming out this week with details on “clean slate ready state” and a registration link!