Step 2 – Eat Real Food for CrossFit performance

Step 1 – Join Unit 2 CrossFit and start training 3-5 days per week.  You are reading this so I am assuming that is a check.

The training we do at Unit 2 CrossFit will get your body to change. However, there is only so much anyone can do if the fuel they put into their body is not healthy real food.  If you are serious about getting results from doing CrossFit at Unit 2 then you must clean up your diet.  So the 2nd step in becoming fit and healthy is to start eating real food.

As Americans we are taught to eat anything but real food. Our grocery stores, even the fancy ones like Whole Foods, are full of things other than real food. Real food is perishable. Real food, ie organic plants and animals will spoil. If food doesn’t spoil then humans are most likely not meant to eat it. Food spoilage is essentially the breakdown of organic material in the presence of oxygen once that organic material is no longer alive and able to fight off the process.

The litmus test: If food can be stored at room temperature for an extended period of time without spoiling then most likely humans are not meant to eat it.

The reason that garbage food doesn’t spoil is that it either no longer contains much organic material or it has been so highly processed and coated in chemicals that it will keep indefinitely. The nutritional value of food that lacks organic material is typically very low. What exactly does consuming the chemicals used to make organic food keep do to the human body over the course of a lifetime?

Real Food:

Beef, chicken, lamb, deer, salmon, apples, cherries, strawberries, broccoli, carrots, almonds, olives, grapes, spinach, cabbage. Scallops, tuna steak, cashews, tomatoes, etc.

Something else:

Table sugar, cakes, cookies, Total Cereal, Potato chips, instant anything, ramen noodles, pancakes, etc.

Where do we find REAL food:

My personal favorite place in the metro-Atlanta area is the Dekalb Farmer’s Market. Next would be Trader Joes and Whole Foods. Finally would be Kroger or Publix. At any of the last four the formula is about the same; avoid the aisles like the plague. 90% of real food is found on the perimeter of grocery stores. The final 10% is found in the frozen food section. Frozen meat and vegetables isn’t as good as the fresh stuff but it is much better than the Doritos aisle. Not everything on the perimeter is good for you. I have seen doughnuts in the produce section so keep your wits about you.

You will end up having to go to the grocery store 2 times per week. Get over it. The extra 20-30 or so years of healthy living on this planet will more than make up for having to shop for food a few extra times per month. My grocery trips only last about 15 minutes since I purchase the same 10 or so things each time.

Eating healthy real food costs more than eating poop in a box. Your grocery bill will most likely go up. It may even double. Even a person on a very tight budget can purchase frozen meats and vegetables. Some people might decide that being healthy and having a lifestyle that promotes longevity isn’t worth investing in. For me it is worth sacrificing having the newest gadget phone or nicest car to give myself the best chance at a long healthy life.

At the end of the day it all goes back to choices. Nearly every choice we make is a survival choice. For many this kind of shopping and eating may be a drastic change. If your goal is to change your health and fitness then your lifestyle must change. There is no one without the other. If you want to change your body you must change your lifestyle.

Little change = little results.

Lots of change = lots of results.

Posted in CrossFit, Diet, Fitness