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Old 09-20-2009, 03:36 PM   #1
Michael Korczowski
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Default Nutrition/IF plan — advice?

Hi Everyone,

I'm a newcomer to these boards and a very novice Crossfitter from the East Bay, CA. After moving back home from Santa Cruz (where I had been taking classes at CF Santa Cruz for a couple months), I hope to join Crossfit Oakland as soon as possible.

My eating habits right now are haphazard and undisciplined. My major goal right now is to get my nutrition dialed — to go 100% paleo and gain an intuitive sense for correct zone proportions and meal timing. In order to succeed at Crossfit Oakland I know I'm going to have to get nutrition right. Plus I have skin issues I want to resolve and I have WAY less energy—mental and physical—than a person my age should have.

I'm 19 years old, male, 5'10-11, 158 lbs. I'm not sure what my body fat percentage is—I don't have body composition "problems" (i.e. I'm not fat), but I do have fat that I'd like to replace with lean muscle. Athletically I'm looking for better met-con performance and coordination—obviously I want to get stronger but I'm definitely not looking to bulk up. Essentially, I'm starting at the base of the Crossfit Pyramid.

Hence I come to these boards in the hope that I can get some advice about my tentative nutrition plans. I realize that without detailed information about my current athletic performance, body fat percentages, blood profile, etc..., it might be difficult if not impossible to give recommendations at this level of detail.

I also realize that it might be a little brazen for a total newbie like me to join these boards and immediately start asking for lifestyle advice. If it's inappropriate let me know. But I've come to the point where I really have to effect a 180 degree change in my health and fitness and to feel confident, I really need some outside input about whether I'm headed in the right direction.

So after much research here is my initial, 'idealized' game plan, which I would hopefully stick to as closely as possible:

Wake ~8am
Workout ~9am
Breakfast ~10am: 4P, 4C, 0F
Snack ~12pm: 1P, 1C, 4F
Lunch ~2pm: 4P, 3C, 5F
Snack ~4pm: 1P, 1C, 4F
Dinner ~6pm: 4P, 3C, 5F

Daily totals: 14 blks protein, 12 blks carb, 18 blks fat

This would represent 16 hrs of intermittent fasting per 24.

I'd aim to get to bed by 12:00 for ~8 hrs of sleep per night.

I would take 4 1000 mg fish oil caps w/ breakfast, lunch, and dinner for a total of 3600 mg equivalent of omega-3. I am also thinking about taking some amount of chromium to fight carb cravings (has this helped others?).

I'm deeply grateful for whatever advice people can give me about where to go from here. It doesn't necessarily have to relate directly to the specific plan listed above. And if people require more information to make judgments, I would be happy to provide further details if possible.

Thanks in advance,

-Michael
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Old 09-20-2009, 05:26 PM   #2
Kevin Perry
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My advice is keep it as simple as possible. I wouldn't worry so much about fasting right now until you get your eating dialed in and this is my advice for eating: Just eat real food, as much of it as you want. Fruits, vegies, lean meats etc. Reduce/stop junk food/sugar intake and most of your skin issues will eventually clear up.

In fact I wouldn't even worry about fasting until you know how to eat right and I would not even worry about how many times a day to eat, just eat when your hungry. No point in starving yourself and at 5'11 158lbs I think you really should not be worrying about fasting and leaning out unless you really want to look like the next anorexic games competitor.

So, eat real food, pick heavy shit up, keep the metcons shortish and you'll be good.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:41 AM   #3
Arien Malec
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Originally Posted by Kevin Perry View Post
In fact I wouldn't even worry about fasting until you know how to eat right and I would not even worry about how many times a day to eat, just eat when your hungry. No point in starving yourself and at 5'11 158lbs I think you really should not be worrying about fasting and leaning out unless you really want to look like the next anorexic games competitor.

So, eat real food, pick heavy shit up, keep the metcons shortish and you'll be good.
Word. Food quality first, before messing around with IF.

And if you are a beginner, you are in the magical land where body comp takes care of yourself on a decent progressive weight training. Check with CFO on getting you on something more strength oriented -- they are good people. I think they went to a more MEBB-oriented approach recently. Although personally, given your situation, I'd go with SS and add in strength-biased metcons as finishers.

And welcome to Oakland!
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Old 09-22-2009, 02:25 PM   #4
Mike ODonnell
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Originally Posted by Michael Korczowski View Post
Plus I have skin issues I want to resolve and I have WAY less energy—mental and physical—than a person my age should have.
-Ditch all caffeine (energy issues)
-Get 8 hours of sleep (energy issues)
-Ditch Sugar (energy and skin issues)
-Avoid all artificial sweeteners (skin issues)
-Ditch Dairy (skin issues)
-Switch to whole foods (all issues)
-If you attempt IF just do it a couple times a week to see how you respond.
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Old 10-03-2009, 05:21 PM   #5
Michael Korczowski
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Thanks for the responses, guys...

I guess it was a bit silly to try to aim for that level of precision right off the bat.

I suppose I'll just start with basics and tinker with the details later on:
  • a smidge of protein & carbs 30-45 mins pre-workout to get hormonally primed (like Barry Sears suggested in that long filmed lecture on CFJ recently);
  • a balanced carb/lean protein meal PWO;
  • PFC meals throughout the rest of the day consisting of lots of green veggies, a palm-sized helping of lean meat or seafood, and some nuts.

HOWEVER this still leaves open the question of the proper total amounts. Based on the the stats I described in my opening to the thread, do people have any advice for appropriate rough daily block counts of prot/fat/carbs?

Also, I'm having some trouble wading through all the different information on PWO nutrition. Robb Wolf has suggested salmon and sweet potatoes and advised against fruit and shakes, but also said he used shakes in his July 1st blog post ("high carb vs. low carb"). And what about PWO block counts? I guess this meal is the main one I feel compulsive about getting right.

Perhaps I should think about getting tested for things like insulin sensitivity and so forth in order to be able to make better judgments about my nutrition (any thoughts?). I have a tendency to make things way more complicated than they need to be... so with an issue like the synchronization of nutrition and training for a beginning athlete—which is actually pretty complicated—my head is close to exploding and so I come here for advice. Again, thanks for the previous replies & thanks in advance for future ones!
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Old 10-04-2009, 09:39 AM   #6
Mike ODonnell
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Also, I'm having some trouble wading through all the different information on PWO nutrition. Robb Wolf has suggested salmon and sweet potatoes and advised against fruit and shakes, but also said he used shakes in his July 1st blog post ("high carb vs. low carb"). And what about PWO block counts? I guess this meal is the main one I feel compulsive about getting right.
Don't get paralysis by analysis.....pwo stick to real foods and you'll be fine. I'm guessing his "shakes" are like real foods in a blender like milk/fruit/etc.....not the prepackaged shakes out there loaded with sugar. Don't worry about insulin sensitivity testing....unless you are ripped and eating donuts all day, you have issues like the rest of us. Stick to whole foods, eat more real foods, stay away from all the processed sugars/carbs and it all works out.

Stop sweating the one "right way" or the perfect ratios...when there could be 10 different ways that can work for you. But they all start with real foods.
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