Fuel

You are what you eat!
We hear just as many questions about nutrition as we do about CrossFit.  Many people have voiced concerns that the Zone and the Paleolithic diets can seem both difficult and restrictive in nature.  Others have said that they don't know how feasible it would be to cook for the whole family, while staying within the confines of these dietary constraints.  We're here to help.  This blog is dedicated to supporting our community on its path to elite fitness by developing the most overlooked portion of fitness - nutrition!

Sure, an athlete may have a sub 3 minute "Fran", or 20+ round "Cindy", but if she isn't controlling her hormone levels through the drug we call food, she isn't realizing her full fitness potential.  When an athlete gets his dialed in, he will experience positive changes in health, energy, and sense of well being, while shredding fat, packing on muscle and optimizing physical performance.  Your nutrition will amplify or diminish the effects of your training efforts.  That's why we're here - to provide you with the results you seek.

We'd like for you to use this blog as a resource for recipes, ideas, or as an opportunity to share your successes.  Have you had a particularly good week of strict Zoning?  Tell everyone!  That's something to celebrate.  Have you had a bad week?  Tell us all about it, as our community is a supportive one.  If you have a recipe you love, send it to us with a picture of you eating it.  We'll try it and if we survive, we'll post it here.  Together we can make this so much fun - but you can't be a part of it unless you get involved.  So do it - NOW!

Resources:

Journal 21 Download Cfjissue21_May04 (The block bible)

Robb Wolf's shopping guide Download Shopping-food

CF Journal 15 Metabolic Derangement Download 15_03_Nutrition_Full_Issue

Link to the Performance Menu Cookbook Volume 1

Link to the Performance Menu Cookbook  Volume 2

Free Recipes from Performance Menu 

The Paleo Diet 

Tuesday 140415

Deadlift 

5 – 5 – 5 – 5 – 5

Post loads to comments and BTW.

IMG 9771 475x712 Tuesday 140415

America and AJ go together like Verve and rope climbs.

CrossFit Verve Lean and Mean Nutrition Challenge  – Are you in?

The CrossFit Verve Lean and Mean Nutrition challenge is a 6 week team and individual challenge designed to teach you healthy nutrition and lifestyle habits in a fun, competitive format that will help you build muscle, eliminate excess body fat and improve your health and fitness.

Why do I need this?

To build healthy lifestyle habits, balance your stress levels, improve your health and continue to improve your performance in the gym. And you’ll likely lose body fat and build muscle while you’re at it.

What should I expect from this challenge?

Over the course of this 6 week challenge, you can expect to build lean muscle and shed excess body fat. But that’s just the beginning. In addition to building a lean and strong physique, you’ll also improve your energy on a daily basis (no more mid afternoon insulin naps), improve your digestion, eliminate nasty food allergies and inflammation, continue to crush your workouts, and gain some control over your hectic and stressful life.

How does it work?

Every day for 6 weeks you will keep track of a couple important things, such as exercise, sleep, nutrition, quiet time and rest days. Each of these activities will have a certain score associated with them. At the end of the competition, the individuals with the highest scores (total points, body fat lost, best team score, most dramatic before/after photos) will be awarded with prizes!

How do I log my score?

You will be given a scorecard prior to the start of the challenge to use to log your scores daily.

What are the prizes?

GRAND PRIZE – Biggest Change in Before/After Photos: 1 month free training, 1 free Foundations membership for a friend, and a gift basket.
Most Body Fat Lost: Gift Basket
Most Points Scored (Individual): Gift Basket
Most Points Scored (Team): T-Shirts and Tender Belly Bacon

What are the rules?

Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. Eliminate alcohol, processed foods, dairy, grains and other inflammatory foods. Exercise 5 times per week. Take 2 days off to rest and recover. Sleep a minimum of 7 hours every night. Take 20 minutes of uninterrupted quiet time every day (no electronics allowed).

How do I get started?

  1. Sign up in person at the gym or e-mail colby@crossfitverve.com
  2. Your fee will be paid through your account on Mind Body
  3. Schedule your first body fat test
  4. Take before pictures (make sure your entire body is in the shot – take one from the front, one from each side and one from the back. And take one flexing – because, why not?). Send these photos to colby@crossfitverve.com
  5. Identify and write down, on paper, 3 goals that you would like to achieve – improved fitness, decreased stress, a lower bodyfat percentage, better performance in the gym, etc
  6. Keep score every day

How does the scoring work?

  • Eating (up to 8 points a day). Earn 2 points for each 100% real food meal (up to 3 per day). Earn 1 point for each clean snack (up to 2 per day).
  • Drinking (1 point per day). Earn 1 point for each day without alcohol, soda, juice or other drinks that taste sweet (no artificial sweeteners). Black coffee and unsweetened tea is acceptable.
  • Exercise (up to 3 points per day). Earn 2 points for each day with a CrossFit workout (maximum of 10 points per week). Earn 1 point for each day with a workout outside of the gym, such as Yoga, hiking, biking, etc. Minimum of 60 minutes of activity for these outside of gym workouts. Earn 2 points for each day that you do NOT exercise (limit 2 per week).
  • Sleeping (2 points per day). Earn 2 points per day for each day with a minimum of 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Naps count towards your total!
  • Quiet Time (1 point per day). Earn 1 point per day for taking 20 uninterrupted minutes of quiet time – no electronics allowed!

How do the teams work?

The teams will be selected at random and you will be assigned a coach. Your coach will provide you with accountability and will also be your resource for any questions regarding the competition.

How much does the program cost?

Program Cost: $35
Before and After Body Fat Test: $65

Where can I schedule my body-fat test?

Check out this Google Spreadsheet to register: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0As6SmCm7GOeadDNmU2JMbWVsaTlsNXNIY2VfZUh6VlE&usp=sharing#gid=0

What is the schedule/timeline for the challenge?
April 17th – First Body Fat Test @ Verve (register at the link above)

April 19th – Registration closes and teams are chosen at random. Information packets are sent out Saturday afternoon, containing all the guides and information you will need for the challenge.
April 20th – Go grocery shopping and prepare meals for the first three to four days.
April 21st – Challenge begins. Start filling out your score cards.
June 1st – Challenge ends. Tally your scores and keep with the healthy habits.
June 4th – Second Body Fat Test @ Verve. Be proud of your hard work.

OKAY, WHO’S IN?  POST TO COMMENTS AND BE READY TO THROW DOWN!

Italian Fritatta

 

photo 9 475x356 Italian Fritatta
Italian fritatta, paleo and zone friendly.

Boun giorno!

We have found a very tasty Italian dish that you can make early in the week and enjoy for several days.  It contains a combination of some good ole vegetables, eggs and sausage.  

Ingredients:
8 eggs  8P
15oz of italian or breakfast sausage  10P
2/3 cup of diced onion  2C
2 1/4 cup of diced tomatoes  3C
12 spears of diced asparagus  1C
1tsp of minced garlic
1/4tsp of black pepper
1/2tsp of italian seasoning
1Tbl of olive oil

Preparation:
Heat the oil in a large pan and then add the sausage.  Let the sausage cook for 5-7 minutes, while the sausage is cooking pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Add onions, garlic, and asparagus to the sausage and cook for another 5-7 minutes.  Place the eggs in a large bowl and scramble with the seasoning and pepper.  Add the sausage and veggie mix and tomatoes into the eggs.  Once all of the ingredients have been folded in, pour into a 9″x9″ baking dish.  Place in the oven and cook for 25 – 30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.  
Divide into six evenly cut pieces.  This will make 6 meals at 3P and 1C.  Add some Avo on the side and finish off with an orange for a 3P3C3F meal.

Boun appetito!  


Kale spring salad

This recipe brings the heartiness of kale together with the tanginess of Dijon mustard and flavorful veggies.  This will be a great salad for lunch or dinner for the upcoming spring.

Ingredients:
4 cups of baby kale  2C
2.5 cups of sliced cucumber  1C
1 ¼ cup of chopped bell pepper  1C
150grams of sliced radish  Freebie
4 Tbs of red wine vinegar  Freebie
2 Tbs of Dijon mustard  Freebie
1 Tbs of olive oil  12F
12 oz of rotisserie chicken  12P

Preparation:

Shred the rotisserie chicken and set aside the rest of the meat for meals later in the week.  In a large bowl combine all of the vegies and chicken.  In a small bowl mix together the vinegar, mustard and olive oil until all have emulsified into a dressing. Pour dressing over the veggies and chicken and shake until all of the mixture is coated in the dressing.  3cups = 3P, 1C, 3F.  Top off your Carbs with a tasty blood orange on the side.

photo 11 475x475 Kale spring salad

No Potato! Potato Salad!

 

photo 1 475x635 No Potato! Potato Salad!
3 block lunch on the go, delish!

Ingredients:
2 heads cauliflower
3 cups diced celery
1 cup diced white or yellow onion
1 20oz jar dill pickles (NO sugar)
13 eggs
black pepper, paprika, 2 tbsp fresh dill (or dried)
olive oil
apple cider vinegar
yellow mustard

Preparation:
Start by boiling your eggs. Place 11 eggs in a pot with cool water so that they are all submerged. Bring water to boil without lid. When it comes to a boil remove the pot from the heat and cover with a lid. Let sit for 12-15 minutes and then place eggs in cold water. Then, rinse cauliflower and cut off ends. Steam florets for 10-15 minutes until soft but not too soft! Place steamed cauliflower in large bowl and allow to cool (I stuck mine in the freezer for a few minutes). While it’s cooling dice your celery, onion, and pickles. Peel eggs and chop them as well. When cauliflower has cooled chop into small pieces. In a LARGE bowl, mix all chopped ingredients together. Now it’s time to make your mayo!

Mayo:
In a blender, add:

2 raw eggs
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tsp yellow mustard
pinch of sea salt
dash of paprika

Start the blender on a low setting and leave on. Measure ½ cup of olive oil. SLOWLY add in tiny amounts of the oil. For example, pour in a tiny amount every minute. This will help the mayo to become fluffy. Although because there is less oil in this recipe than others it will still be pretty runny. When it’s done, stir it into the cauliflower mixture. Add dill, pepper, more paprika, and any other spices you might desire (I added cayenne). And voila!! No potato, potato salad.
ZONE EXCHANGE:
1 cup salad= 1P 0.5C 2F

Meal idea (3 block): Use 2 cups salad (2p 1c 4f). Add 1 oz diced rotisserie chicken(1p), 1 cup cherry tomatoes(0.5C), and serve on a bed of greens (freebie!). Add 1 block fruit of choice. Note: Don’t worry about the 1 extra block of fat!

Flavored Water Recipes

lrcukewater1 475x511 Flavored Water Recipes

We’ve heard and read it a million times, drink 64 ounces of water a day.  I understand the benefits of drinking water, but the taste is just so, well tasteless.  Most of the little packets you can add to water contain artificial sweeteners that aren’t the best for you even though they make water so much more tasty.  Recently, I came across an interesting article that covered a few ways to make water more enjoyable.

Here’s a few simple recipes to make water fantasmical:

LEMON–MINT or LEMON-BASIL WATER

  • 1/4 lemons, sliced
  • 1 1/2 cups firmly packed fresh mint or basil leaves
  • 6–8 cups water
  • 6–8 cups ice cubes
  • Fresh mint or basil sprigs

HONEYDEW–LIME WATER

  • 1 slices of ripe honeydew melon
  • 1/4 lime, sliced
  • 4 sprigs of mint
  • 1 half-gallon of water

HERB AND BERRY–FLAVORED WATER

  • 1/2 cup fresh blueberries, lightly crushed
  • 2  4–inch sprigs of fresh rosemary. lightly bruised  (to release more flavor)
  • 1 half-gallon of water

Please note recipes were changed to allow for a lower carbohydrate content.  These and many other great ideas can be found here:

NancyCreative

With water this delicious, there is no excuse to not drink enough.  Put some in your to go bottle or keep a pitcher handy at the house.  Your body will thank you.

Sweet Potato Hash

Who doesn’t love breakfast?!  I mean, really, I could eat breakfast all day long.  It’s the most important meal of the day, and having some veggies in it are a great way to keep your belly full of energy for the day ahead.

Sweet Potato Hash (RealFood/Zone Style)

Ingredients: 
Sweet Potatoes 10.6 cups raw (~3-4 large)
Sausage, raw NO casing 5 cups cooked (~1lb uncooked) 
Onion 7 cups raw (~2)
Garlic – 6 cloves 
Salt 
Pepper
Eggs 
Olive oil (spray for pans)

Time: ~1 hour but worth it and you have plenty left over for other quick meals.
Zone: 1.5cups of hash equal 2.5C, 1P.  Add eggs, oil to cook with and a little fruit to complete your breakfast.

Preparation: 
1. Heat oven to 450
2. In a skillet brown the sausage.  Make sure to get it as tiny as possible while it cooks.
3. Chop the onions into small squares.  Measure out 7 cups.
4. In a skillet brown the onions. Cook until dark brown. Use cooking spray for the base. 
5.  While sausage and onions are cooking, begin chopping the sweet potato as small as possible.
6. Line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment paper, spray with the olive oil and spread out the sweet potatoes as you chop them.  Make sure you have 10.6 cups.  I used two pans and spread them evenly.
7. As the onions are done, measure them evenly into the pans.
8. As the sausage is done, measure out 5 cups and spread evenly into the pans.
9. Add spices; garlic, salt and pepper.
10. Roast for 30 to 45 minutes or until they are soft and browned.
11. Now the hash is good to go into the fridge for amazing breakfasts.

Preparation in a meal:
1. Measure out the hash you need for 1 meal. See zone measurements above.
2. Spray skillet 
3.  Add hash to skillet on low heat (can do this in oven if prefer)
4. Add desired eggs on top.
5.  You will not stir the entire time it cooks, can add a top to the pan if you want it to cook faster.  Takes about 15-20 until the eggs are fully cooked through. 
6.  Add a little fruit to top off your blocks and enjoy.  The fat is in the cooking oil. 

 

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Getting tired of the same old, same old breakfast?  Want something hot that will stick to your ribs before a day on the slopes?  Well we give you Stuffed Acorn Squash from PaleOMGkindly zoned into yummy deliciousness by Ali and Robyn.  THANK YOU!

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 lbs ground breakfast sausage (8P)
  • 2 Acorn Squash (CHO varies)
  • 4 T. dried cranberries (4CHO)
  • 4 eggs(4P)
  • garlic
  • salt and pepper

Directions:

  • Cut Acorn squash in half and scoop out seeds.  Spray acorn squash with little coconut oil and place face down on baking sheet.  Bake for 25 minutes at 400 degrees until squash is soft.
  • While the squash is cooking, cook breakfast sausage over skillet.
  • Once acorn squash is done cooking, remove from oven and let cool.
  • Remove insides of squash and measure out 4 cups of acorn squash and place in same skillet as sausage.  If you have remaining acorn squash, spoon out into tupperware bowl and it is the perfect veggie dish for later in the week or paired with any meal for your CHO.
  • In skillet mix together sausage, acorn squash, salt, pepper, little fresh garlic and any other spice of your choice.  Once all ingredients have cooked down together, add 4 T. of dried cranberries.
  • Evenly add back the acorn squash/sausage mixture to your 4 acorn squash skins.
  • Make a little spoon indent in the middle of acorn squash and crack one egg into squash.
  • Place back in oven for about 15 minutes until you get the desired egg-cooked preference.
  • One of the acorn squash halves = 3P, 3CHO, 0F

Energy Drinks

energy drinks 475x270 Energy Drinks

Lately energy drinks have been in the news.  I consume one from time to time, this lead me to do some research on the amount of caffeine each one contains.  Did you know they are not required to list the amount of caffeine on the label?  Even when they do the reported amount can be way off.

Consumer Reports analyzed the caffeine content of 27 top-selling energy drinks, testing three samples each.  Of the 27 only 16 reported the amount of caffeine in each serving.  Of the 16 that did report their caffeine levels, five were off by as much as 20% compared to the stated levels.  As a point of reference an average cup of coffee has around 100 milligrams of caffeine.  Those little shooters similar to five hour energy have around 240 milligrams of caffeine per bottle.  Experts say most healthy adults can consume up to 400 milligrams of caffeine a day.

The intended extra boost of energy may actually lead to daytime sleepiness.

A recent study by the U.S. Army also concluded that energy drinks can cause daytime sleepiness and impair performance when too many are consumed.  Around 45% of troops reported consuming one energy drink per day and 14% reported consuming 3 or more per day.  Service members consuming three or more energy drinks per day were more likely to report sleep disruptions and were more likely to fall asleep during briefings or on guard duty, researchers said.

Just some food for thought.

Salmon Casserole and Fennel Salad

Nutrition is the foundation to a healthy lifestyle.  There are many resources to keep you on the right path. Some of our favorite websites include: paleoplan.com  paleomg.com  emeals.com.  We’ll be announcing the details of our upcoming Change Your Life Nutrition Kick-off this week, so keep your eyes peeled!  It’s going to be the best one yet!

Emeals is a service that sends you recipes and shopping list weekly, with different meal options, we chose the Paleo option with our groupon deal.  Here is a recipe from emeals that has been adapted to be zone friendly. 

Salmon Casserole and Fennel Salad

Ingredients: 

 6 eggs  6P
9oz of smoked salmon  6P 
1/3cup green onions chopped  1
1 1/4cup red bell pepper chopped  1C
1/2tsp of black pepper  freebie
________________________________
For salad: 
4Tbs of avocado chunks  4F 
1 bulb of fennel, finely sliced  2C 
1 grapefruit cut into small sections  2C
2Tbs of lemon juice  freebie
21/3 tsp of olive oil  8F

Preparation:
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grab your 12 count cupcake tin and prep it with a little coconut oil spray, or non-stick spray.  Evenly divide the smoked salmon into all 12 spots.  Combine the eggs, pepper, onions, and peppers in a bowl and mix together.  Evenly add the mixture into the 12 spots.  Place in oven and let cook for 20-25 minutes or until they are set in the middle.  
While the casserole’s are cooking, we can prep the salad.  Place the avocado, fennel, and grapefruit in a large bowl.  In a different bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and olive oil.  After the liquids have combined, poor over the salad.  
This meal makes 12P 6C 12F.  Each casserole is 1P, divide the salad into four even servings for 1C and 3F. 

Chicken Veggie Salad with Avocado Herb Dressing

This recipe was adapted from www.multiplydelicious.com, adapted to zone quantities by Robyn!  Cold or hot, it’s yummy and already zoned–YES!

Chicken Veggie Salad Ingredients:
1 pound chicken shredded (easiest way is to crockpot some chicken breasts/tenders)
7 slices bacon (save 1 Tablespoon + 1 tsp bacon fat for dressing)

2 bags broccoli slaw
1.5 cups yellow onion, diced
4 cups zucchini, diced
1.5 cups cherry tomato – halved
2 bell peppers (red, orange, or yellow are the best)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh oregano
2 Tablespoons fresh parsley
1 teaspoon paprika
salt and pepper to taste

Avocado Herb Dressing Ingredients:
6 Tablespoons of avocado
⅓ cup fresh parsley
⅓ cup fresh basil
1 Tablespoon + 1 tsp bacon fat
1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
Juice of 1 Lemon
Juice of 1 Lime
¼ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon sea salt – optional

2012 09 23 13 17 55 942 475x356 Chicken Veggie Salad with Avocado Herb Dressing
Chicken & Veggies

Instructions:
1. Cook bacon- either fry or broil then cut up, and save some of the grease
2. In large pot over medium heat saute broccoli slaw, onion, zucchini, peppers, tomatoes for about 10 min. You will be able to tell when the veggies are cooked enough to your liking. Add garlic, herbs and seasonings, let sit while you make the dressing.
3. Add chopped bacon and chicken to mix, stir well.
4. For dressing; add all ingredients to a small food processor and blend away.
5. Add dressing to chicken veggie mix and stir really well

This makes quite a large batch, so yummy you will be able to enjoy it all week!
⅔ cup = 1P, 0.5 CHO, 1F
2 cups = 3P, 1.5 CHO, 3F