So... I'm fairly new to paleo. I've been gluten free for over a year, but just recently cut out all grains, sugar (except for 70%+ dark chocolate), white potatoes, rice, etc. I do feel better, for the most part. Except two things. I don't seem to have as much energy as I used to when I'm doing a WOD, and I cannot seem to lose any fat.
I've yo-yo-ed quite a bit in the last few years, between 160 and 200lbs. I'm 23, 5'5" and fairly healthy otherwise. I've been active the entire time as well. Crossfit off and on, downhill skiing numerous days a week in the winter... All sorts of things, but when I lose the weight, I CANNOT seem to keep it off. Paleo makes sense to me, and I believe that it would be the key to maintaining that weight loss, however... I have to get it off again! I've always been strong, I swam competitively for 6 years, and I'm an outdoor sports junkie. Whitewater, mountain bikes, skis... anything.
I've been trying to eat VLC, and a typical day for me looks like this. Breakfast: 2-3 eggs cooked in butter with an ounce or so of good cheese, 3 slices of bacon, a few mushrooms or bell pepper slices, and half an avocado
Lunch: Salad with baby kale, spinach, arugula, avocado, cottage cheese, pancetta and homemade dressing
Snacks: Almonds or cashews, cottage cheese, or something I've baked with almond flour.
Post Crossfit: 1 scoop of protein powder, coconut milk and sometimes yogurt and/or fruit in a smoothie.
Dinner: Chicken or beef cooked in butter or bacon fat with steamed or roasted veggies. I mostly eat broccoli, cauliflower, butternut squash, mushrooms or parsnips. Sometimes I make a coconut flour crust paleo pizza with natural mozzarella and various toppings.
So, I'm wondering, for my specific goals, is 4-6 days a week too much Crossfit for fat loss? Maybe there's something wrong with the way I am eating that is hurting my progress. I don't know. HELP!
Crossfit is very glycolitically demanding. You cannot perform at peak performance 4-6 times a week at Crossfit eating VLC and lose weight.
If weight loss is your goal, dial the Crossfit way back 1-2 times a week, add some immediate (<30 min) PWO carbs (sweet potato, squash, etc) on those days. Feel free to eat VLC the other days. If you're itching to move then lift (heavy) weights and walk (slowly). Your other activities also sound like they're pro-fat storage - any moderate intensity long time domain stuff will promote fat storage. (I'm not saying this stuff is bad and you shouldn't do it, I love mountain biking all day myself, it's just that it's contrary to the goals you stated).
Crossfit is great, I do it (I even over train at it), but it is nowhere near ideal for fat loss.
Also, ditch the protein shake - never drink your calories, that's a great way to put on weight.
Ease up on the fat, don't get too carried away with it. You could try doing without dairy for a bit also.
And 4-6 days is quite a bit, especially for Crossfit. Maybe once or twice a week would be better if you really enjoy it. Perhaps do some very structured strength training, push yourself but it shouldn't be endurance training, if you catch my drift?
There is a moderate approach. You can add yams/rice while cutting your fat or you can consider something like adding fibrous root vegetables and starchy vegetables like Peas. This gives you the benefit of extra starch while avoiding the giant starch bombs like taters or yams. It's a good way to integrate a little more in rather than making massive shifts.
Generally I'd say eat to taste and emphasize protein for fat loss.
thanks for asking the question!! i needed help on this too...have been VLC and finding it so hard to smash a good WOD...thinking I might mix it up with 2/3 Crossfit a week and 2/3 strength training a week. Plus when it's sunny out i always walk to work :) I eat butter but may cut that too for fat loss and see how I go with coconut/olive oil...
VLC without periodic carbohydrate refeeds will deplete your muscles of glycogen and require your liver to turn protein into glucose. This isn't as much of a problem if you are sedentary, but if you are very active, you will wipe yourself out and rebuild muscles. Consider paleo-friendly sources of starch like sweet potatoes.
I am a cross fitter as well and have gone from over 240 to 137, so I understand your battle. I go about four days a week. I would reco zoning your paleo and cutting out all dairy, it is way too easy to over eat and stalls my weight loss. What I do is 3-1-3-1-3 with my blocks. (one block is technically 7 grams of protein, 9 of carbs and 3 of fat.)Sample day might look like this- Breakfast- can of sardines (drain off the olive oil and discard), cup of blueberries, half an avocado Snack- salad made w two cups mixed greens, hard boiled egg, drizzle of avocado or coconut oil, lemon juice and spices Lunch- 3 oz of meat you like, large salad like above (no egg), bag or baby carrots or whole cucumber cut up, half an avocado Snack- same as above Dinner- 3 oz steak cooked in coconut oil, big bag or broccoli or other low carb veggie steamed and topped w coconut oil or ghee (the only dairy I use usually) and one other carb like half a sweet potato or carrots if you worked out and feel like u need the extra carbs.
I work out either before breakfast or before dinner. I don't eat a specific pwo meal and most of the girls who drink protein shakes after working out tend to be bigger I have noticed. I did lose most of my weight before starting cf but I have found eating this way helps me slowly lose more weight and keeps my performance good. I would talk one on one with one of your coaches about nutrition and set up time to check in with them once a week to keep yourself accountable. Good luck!
Hey. A few things I've noticed. Dairy tends to stall weight loss in many individuals, and swapping saturated fats in butter and cheese for monounsaturated fatty acids has been shown to boost fat loss. For example, read
I personally have made the choice from a young age to avoid dairy fats, and notice that whenever I try incorporating them even without increasing calories, it never works out to my benefit.
People tout the benefits of crossfit a lot because of its' afterburn effect. However, this is very GREATLY exaggerated. Fat loss without additional cardio is a chore, IMHO. Try dropping the dairy for week and seeing if you notice anything. If you calories dip too low, replace it with healthy fats (olive oil, mixed nuts, avocado, eggs, etc). Also adding some sort of cardio and/or volume training will help dramatically in melting the fat away. Keep track of your calories and make sure your creating a consistent caloric deficit as well, which is no brainer but I just thought I'd remind you.
Hope this helps and good luck with your fat loss goals!
Both dairy and nuts often stall people. Also--eating "paleofied" foods can do it also: paleo pizza, almond flour baked goods, etc.
Try eating just whole foods: meats, veggies (and you are so active, sweet potatoes are good!), eggs, etc. I wouldn't even worry about the butter as much as the cheese/cottage cheese.
I made this same mistake not to long ago...
Looks like you are about 60% Fat, 30% Pro, 10% Carbs...cut down on the fat substantially, increase your carbs.
Analyzing your diet, here are my tips: -Sample Breakfast based off of what you eat: Eat 2 eggs + 6 eggwhites, 1 piece of bacon and berries. -Fruit only in the morning.
-Cut out the dairy unless its in your whey protein shakes. (mix with water or unsweetened almond milk) -Count the grams of protein per day, make sure you are hitting the correct amount for your body weight. -4-5 oz of protein at a time or 30g in your shakes. -Post workout- Eat a sweet potato (starchy carb), protein, some fribrous carbs -Never eat Fat post WOD
-Got to have a starchy carb post wod to spike your insulin to then allow the protein to be absorbed!
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