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Do you need to do Crossfit with Paleo in order to lose Weight?

by (5)
Updated October 22, 2014 at 3:56 AM
Created January 23, 2013 at 3:33 PM

I've been doing paleo strict for about 2 1/2 weeks now and I've lost only about a pound a week. I'm happy that I've lost those 2 lbs, don't get me wrong, but I'm just very surprised that after cleaning up my diet so much, I haven't lost more. I run for about half an hour every other day, so my question is, does Paleo need to be paired with something intense like crossfit in order to lose weight? I'm a woman-5'8, I weigh 160 and am 23 years old. I normally weigh around 140, but have gained 20 or so lbs over the past year and a half from eating crappy foods. A typical day looks like this:

Breakfast: 2 paleo almond cookies, or some Almond milk

Lunch: Spinach salad, with chicken, vinagrette and vegetables snack: nuts and kombucha

dinner: Grilled chicken or some paleo dinner recipe...spaghetti sauce and squash...

What do you all think?

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5650 · January 25, 2013 at 10:00 PM

i don't think paleo baked goods are so bad! i bake them when i get bored with my meals just to keep me looking forward to food. my baked goods are ONLY almond/coconut flour, flax eggs, veggies, fruit, and a little coconut oil. i never need added sweeteners. i don't see how any of these ingredients are detrimental to health.

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20908 · January 23, 2013 at 10:24 PM

Yeah, I missed that part the first time I read it. Eat real food (stuff without ingredients). Any paleoized food (begins with Paleo-) isn't Paleo.

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319 · January 23, 2013 at 9:25 PM

I don't see how that is relevant. It doesn't matter if running can make you lose weight a bit faster than sprinting and lifting. They key is health. This woman is not 200lbs overweight, but 20 as she states. 3-5 miles a day is probably great for you right now, but I doubt your body won't feel the effects of your 3-5 miles a day of that in twenty years. As to you feeling happier, your just addicted to chronic cardio. Just like any other addiction. I'm pretty sure I would feel great on crack and lose weight, but that doesn't mean its good for my health in the long or short term.

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436 · January 23, 2013 at 6:58 PM

agree with everything here except the claim that running is worse that other exercise. This is a stereotype here that in my experience is completely false. I lose weight sooo much faster when I run 3-5 miles a day even when my net calories work out to be the same. I also feel healthier and happier. Weight training does not help me nearly as much. I think sprints and weight training are worth trying if you haven't but I think it is unfair to claim that they are absolutely better than running because for me at least, that is not true.

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8014 · January 23, 2013 at 6:06 PM

You don't "need" to pair Paleo eating with intense exercise, but you do need to pair it with with REAL FOOD. Doesn't sound like much food, either. You could probably eat a bit more. I know it sounds counterintuitive, and you don't want to overload on calories, but you also don't want to starve yourself either. If you're trying to lose body fat, please have a nice chunk of protein for breakfast. Almond milk is just not gonna cut it.

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8014 · January 23, 2013 at 6:03 PM

Eat a real breakfast!

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8 Answers

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319 · January 23, 2013 at 3:42 PM

Your diet is looking pretty bad.

First, where are you getting your fat? It looks to me that its largely from nuts and some paleoish baked goods?

Second, do you ever have meat besides chicken? Is it just the breast your eating?

If I were you I would have hardboiled eggs for breakfast, and skip the cookies, add some beef and an avacado for lunch, and have some fatty meat/fish for dinner. In addition, losing a pound a week is a good amount of weight loss. You shouldn't expect much more than that. Lastly, instead of running do some sprinting and weight lifting. Its better for you.

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436 · January 23, 2013 at 6:58 PM

agree with everything here except the claim that running is worse that other exercise. This is a stereotype here that in my experience is completely false. I lose weight sooo much faster when I run 3-5 miles a day even when my net calories work out to be the same. I also feel healthier and happier. Weight training does not help me nearly as much. I think sprints and weight training are worth trying if you haven't but I think it is unfair to claim that they are absolutely better than running because for me at least, that is not true.

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319 · January 23, 2013 at 9:25 PM

I don't see how that is relevant. It doesn't matter if running can make you lose weight a bit faster than sprinting and lifting. They key is health. This woman is not 200lbs overweight, but 20 as she states. 3-5 miles a day is probably great for you right now, but I doubt your body won't feel the effects of your 3-5 miles a day of that in twenty years. As to you feeling happier, your just addicted to chronic cardio. Just like any other addiction. I'm pretty sure I would feel great on crack and lose weight, but that doesn't mean its good for my health in the long or short term.

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379 · January 23, 2013 at 4:01 PM

You are losing a pound a week. A good, healthy, sustainable amount of weight loss. You gained a pound a month, it's not going to come off you in a week.

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20908 · January 23, 2013 at 3:44 PM

No. In fact I'd argue that crossfit is antagonistic to losing weight. If you do a little crossfit style HIIT a couple of times a week, that's a good supplement but full crossfit where you end up overtraining is not a good idea.

Diet is the most important part of weight loss by a large margin. If you're feeling active, then throwing in som crossfit is a great way to get fit. Just don't get sucked into overtraining, it's very easy to! The high intensity group classes are so fun, it's easy to get carried away. I'm a coach at a crossfit gym and I'm always pushing people to slow down if they want better results.

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170 · January 23, 2013 at 6:15 PM

As mentioned above, the biggest bang for your buck is nutrition -that will get you the biggest changes (often cited as being responsible for 90% or more of "results"). Leaves little for the role of exercise (for "weight loss", specifically), but then you must also consider the bigger overall issue of "health", whereupon exercise IS very important. Think regular slow movements (daily walk/very easy run) and occasional "hard" workout where you push yourself (strength or high intensity intervals once/twice weekly). Your biggest need right now (as I see it): patience. Be consistent, think "lifelong"... and the changes will come. In the meantime, keep improving, for example by consulting sites such as these. Specifically, on the nutrition front: less chicken, more beef/lamb/fish/seafood; try eating the bulk of your carbs during the meal immediately following your workouts (as opposed to first thing in the morning with almond cookies). Get your sleep (roughly 8hrs, consistently). All the best!

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80 · January 23, 2013 at 6:06 PM

No cross fit necessary. Tighten up that diet first of all.

Add hardboiled eggs, bacon, avocado, nuts, olive oil, and chicken THIGHS mmmm to make that salad really satisfy and sing.

Paleo baked good for breakfast? I think of paleo baked goods as like a sometime treat. Breakfast for me is like three eggs, asparagus sauteed in some bacon drippings (but usually I have black coffee and fast til about 11 am every day-- really effective you should try it).

Dinner-- steak and as much broccoli as you can handle. Throw another half an avocado in. There's so many options. Try to finish dinner before 6 or 7.

The intermittent fast is great... my cravings for SAD foods have virtually disappeared and my satiety is way up. Good luck to you!

I'm dropping BF% pretty consistently and all I do is about 20 minutes of bodyweight strength training 2-3 times per week with sprinting 2-3 times per week (20 minutes).

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1363 · January 23, 2013 at 6:26 PM

Firstly - You do not need to do CrossFit to lose weight on Paleo. Although exercise never hurts, but you are running anyway so you are fine.

Secondly - You need to manage your expectations. I know how tempting it is to look at the scale 2 weeks in and think about how little has changed and get discouraged or worry about what you are doing wrong. Stay strong, at your current weight and height, losing a pound a week is FANTASTIC.

I will tell you how I am doing so far, because I am around the same body comp as you. I am 8 weeks in to strict paleo diet and crossfit 6 days a week. I am 5'5" and started at weight 150. I now weight 145. That is .6 pounds per week (and most of the change happened in week 7). I think that is reasonable.

Relax, give it 4-5 weeks and then look at whether you have lost weight or not. If not- do not despair! :) Make a change in your diet and wait until you find what works. One or more pounds of weight loss per week is for people who are obese or have a lot of fat to lose. For someone who is not even in the overweight category in BMI, you are doing very well! Stay positive and keep up the good work!

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5 · January 25, 2013 at 3:31 PM

Thank you all so much. I am happy that I am losing weight, but I definitely agree that my diet could use some revamping. I haven't experienced increased energy yet, but have nearly gotten rid of some chronic head aches and some joint pain I've had for nearly my entire life! But, really this was very very helpful. I have somewhat convinced my entire household to go paleo with me, but they aren't as dedicated as me. They do it more half way and make a bunch of paleo baked goods. I'll just have to work on eating those little treats maybe once a week as opposed to once a day! Also, I just bought a giant thing of hardboiled eggs from costco. :)

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5650 · January 25, 2013 at 10:00 PM

i don't think paleo baked goods are so bad! i bake them when i get bored with my meals just to keep me looking forward to food. my baked goods are ONLY almond/coconut flour, flax eggs, veggies, fruit, and a little coconut oil. i never need added sweeteners. i don't see how any of these ingredients are detrimental to health.

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842 · January 24, 2013 at 4:51 AM

Beef broths, chicken broths, http://undergroundwellness.com/how-to-make-beef-bone-broth/, meats and eggs for breakfast, meat and salad, veggies for lunch, butter, coconut oil, squash, sweet potato, fish, salmon, herring, sardines, some of the stuff I would add to your diet. Lose the cookies and the almond milk. We each drink a liter of water with supplements upon rising, have a cup of beef broth and then coffee with heavy cream. On the days that we eat breakfast, we have eggs and bacon or a homemade sausage, avocado, and peas with butter. On the days that I fast, I have heavy cream in my coffee and eat towards evening, drinking lots of ph water or distilled water with supplements or green juice. You need to up your nutrition. If I get a sugar craving (very, very rare now), or a food craving but have eaten a lot, I will eat a teaspoon or more of coconut oil and that usually stops the craving. Lots and lots of good water during the day. Best of luck to you.

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