in 2002, CrossFit introduced a plan called “Theoretical Hierarchy of the Development of an Athlete.” This plan stresses the importance of nutrition in boosting health and performance. Imagine food as the fuel for your body—it’s the key to making your activities work better. Bad eating habits can hurt your performance and well-being, but making smart food choices can really boost your physical health and performance levels.
Start Small: A big misunderstanding is that you need to change your whole diet at once. That can be a lot to handle mentally and might stop you from making changes. But the truth is, you can make these changes bit by bit. Even a small switch in your breakfast—like choosing eggs, fruit, and avocado instead of sugary cereal—can make a big difference in how you feel. These gradual changes add up over time, transforming your overall quality of life.
CrossFit’s Nutrition Plan: CrossFit’s advice on nutrition is simple: focus on eating meats, vegetables, nuts, seeds, some fruit, little starch, and no added sugar. To stay healthy and perform your best, keep your food intake at levels that support exercise without adding extra body fat. Basically, eat whole, unprocessed foods and cut down on sugar.
Why Avoid Sugar? Too much sugar is linked to problems like insulin resistance, cardiovascular diseases, and Type 2 diabetes. Even natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup and artificial sweeteners can cause issues. CrossFit recommends steering clear of these and opting for a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods.
Say No to Industrialized Seed Oils: Industrialized seed oils, found in many processed foods, can mess with the balance of fatty acids in your body, causing inflammation. CrossFit suggests choosing healthier oils like olive oil, coconut oil, or fats like butter.
Measuring Intake: CrossFit’s second piece of advice is about controlling portion sizes. They suggest measuring your food intake to support exercise without adding extra body fat. Eating too much can lead to storing fat, while eating too little can cause various health issues.
Tips for Measuring Intake: There are different ways to measure your food, like the Zone Diet or using smartphone apps. The key is to find what works best for you. CrossFit recommends eating three to five meals within a 12-hour window for better insulin sensitivity and steady energy levels.
Small Changes for Big Results: You don’t have to overhaul your entire diet at once. Small changes, like focusing on one meal or snack, can make a big difference. Gradually switch to whole, natural foods and measure your intake bit by bit. This approach helps you build sustainable habits and boosts your confidence in making healthier choices.
Healthy Recipes from One Life Fitness & Nutrition in Glen Cove: To make healthy eating easier, here are some simple and delicious recipes you can try at home. And for personalized guidance on your nutrition journey, consider checking out One Life Fitness & Nutrition in Glen Cove.
- BREAKFAST: Egg Cups (Makes 12 cups)Ingredients:
- 3-4 cups shredded potato (russet, Yukon Gold, or sweet potato)Olive or avocado oil1 tsp sea salt½ tsp pepper¼ tsp onion powder10 eggs1 oz ham, dicedSplash of hot sauce
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.Wash and shred the potatoes.Place the shredded potatoes on a dish or paper towel, and pat them dry.Add the shredded potatoes to a bowl along with ½ tsp sea salt, ¼ tsp pepper, and onion powder.Spray a muffin tin with avocado or olive oil.Line the bottom of each muffin tin with the shredded potatoes and press them down firmly. Bake the potatoes for 12-15 minutes or until they start to brown.While the potatoes are baking, whisk the eggs in a bowl, then fold in the diced ham, ½ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, and a splash or two of hot sauce.Remove the potatoes from the oven and pour the egg mixture into each cup.Bake the egg cups for an additional 12-15 minutes, or until the eggs are cooked through.
- 2 cups romaine lettuce¼ cup garbanzo beans3-4 oz ham, cubed1-2 oz cheddar cheese, cubed¼ cup cherry tomatoes, halved1-2 tbsp red onion, dicedSalad dressing of your choice (Note: Pay special attention to the ingredients listed — added sugars and industrialized seed oils are common culprits in commercial salad dressings.)
- In a large bowl, add the lettuce, garbanzo beans, ham, cheese, tomatoes, and onion.Drizzle with 2-4 tablespoons of your favorite salad dressing and toss to combine.
- 4 medium sweet potatoes1 lb shredded chicken (Use rotisserie chicken from the store or cook your chicken in the crockpot, then shred.)6-8 oz Buffalo sauceSea saltOlive oilOptional Toppings: Blue cheese, green onions
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.Wash and dry sweet potatoes. With a knife, poke a few holes on all sides of the sweet potatoes.Cover the sweet potatoes in olive oil and season the skin with sea salt.Bake the sweet potatoes for 45-60 minutes or until soft to the touch.In the meantime, place your shredded chicken in a bowl and add your favorite store-bought Buffalo sauce, then toss to combine.Once the sweet potatoes have cooled slightly, slice them lengthwise (going only about ¾ of the way through the potato) and expose the flesh.With a fork, gently lift and fluff the flesh from the bottom and sides of the sweet potatoes.Lower the oven temperature to 350°F.Fill the sweet potato with the Buffalo chicken mixture, then place back in the oven for 5-10 minutes to warm the chicken through, if needed.Remove from the oven and add your favorite toppings.
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