Ask Erin: training and diet as a newbie?
Recently received this question in my inbox and thought the answers I gave might be helpful for most of you to see! Of course, there’s always a LOT to say when someone asks a question about anything training or nutrition-related – but I do find that paralysis by analysis helps no one – simplify your goals, simplify your strategy for getting there, and you’re more likely to actually DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT. If you have a question about anything CFCC-related, always feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org – and THANKS to the member who allowed me to pass their question along!
Hey Erin – based on your blog post this evening, I was wondering if we could chat or if you could give me some pointers as to how to use CrossFit to achieve fat loss/ slim down (I.e., how many sessions per week, how I should be eating, etc.).
Thanks for emailing!
As far as fat loss/slim down stuff goes – this is TECHNICALLY not programming :) but I’m happy to get you started in the right direction and you are very right in assuming that the two (what you do, and what you eat) go hand-in-hand when it comes to the majority of people’s goals in coming to CrossFit.
To frame my technical note there – I work as a nutritional consultant during three seasons of the year at CFCC and although this sounds very fancy, it’s really not. We run challenges called CFCC Body Change Composition Challenges (BCCC – because acronyms that are hard to say are SO much more fun) and these involve a big group of CFCCers trying to do something different with their diets for just 30 days. There’s a small fee to be a part of it but that’s mostly because there are some sweet prizes to be had at the end for the two people that make the biggest change, AND because you get 4 private consulting sessions where-in for a half hour you get a food log reviewed and all your questions answered – depending on your needs sometimes you are literally emailed a “menu” for the week.
The next challenge takes place near the end of April and you will CERTAINLY hear a lot about it then. All that said, until then, my advice would be this if you are looking to take a step in the right direction in letting Crossfit make the biggest change for you:
- beginning to order your burger without the bun (but for now, fries are ok)
- getting the wings (yes, probably still breaded but not nearly as “bready” as pizza) instead of the pizza. Save the ever-hallowed pizza for nights when you REALLY know it’s going to be worth eating.
- instead of having pasta when you’re out, you can have something rice based, or maybe potato based, or maybe just meat with vegetables!
- breakfast will need to be a little more creative than cereal or bagels. Try some of these ideas out. Or just buy jerky and fruit or nuts from Trader Joe’s.
- You will need to plan to have lunch be something OTHER than a sandwich – and this means, if you don’t like salads – you may need to start packing your lunch! Fear not – there are so many tasty and VERY easy to prepare options. You may even find that you save a little money off of not buying food out.
- possibly switching from beer to hard liquor (haha!). Really though, even if you LIMIT your beer to 1-3 drinks, you’ll be better off if you are currently drinking more than that on multiple nights over the weekend.