One of the most common pitfalls people fall into with nutrition is taking on too much at once. Remember, this is a marathon, not a sprint. While there are literally thousands of things we could potentially change about your diet, throwing yourself into the fire all at once probably isn’t ideal. Taking on too much at once can be overwhelming, and isn’t realistic to yield long term maintainable results – which is what we want, right?
Imagine you are brand new to taking up snow skiing -Which of these two skiers is more likely to A) Have Success, and B) Continue skiing: A skier that takes the lift for a double black diamond with no prior experience at all, OR a skier that uses the professional help of an expert at a ski shop to choose the right skis that suit their needs, takes a few lessons, and starts their first solo attempt on the bunny hill? Start small.
Here are 4 simple, effective things you can start TODAY to improve your nutritional habits and help build a foundation for success!
1.) Log your Intake
Imagine calling a mechanic and asking for advice on your car and, without telling him any information, they tell you, “it’s probably the battery.” Sure, it could be the battery, but without taking a look at your car or gathering any additional information the likelihood of nailing the diagnosis with a total guess isn’t very high. The same goes for nutrition – we can’t fix it if we don’t know what’s broken. We highly recommend logging your food for at least a few days, to get a sense of awareness of what your daily intake looks like. Once we have this information, it is much easier to
2.) Buy a Food Scale
Building off of #1, a personal food scale is arguably the best investment you can make for your nutrition. These are very cheap (around $20 on Amazon), and will give you everything you need to properly weigh and measure your food. “Eyeballing” your food isn’t quite as accurate as we’d wish. Once you have your scale, you will be amazed at how similar 4 ounces of chicken looks to 6 ounces! While this doesn’t sound like a huge difference, it’s actually about 70 calories. This may not sound like much, but an extra 70 or so calories from estimating rather than measuring, a few times a day, a few days a week… Well, you get it. The point is it is VERY likely you are eating significantly more (or less) than what you perceive. Buy a scale, computers are smarter than us.
3.) Avoid processed food
One of the simplest changes one can make is avoiding processed foods. By definition, a processed food is “a food item that has had a series of mechanical or chemical operations performed on it to change or preserve it.”
Processed foods are those that typically come in a box or bag and contain more than one item on the list of ingredients. For most of us, it’s not realistic to cut out ALL processed foods. But remember, we are starting on the bunny hill, not the double black diamond – simply cutting back on these, or avoiding certain ones can be a fantastic place to start.
4.) Take CrossFit’s Nutrition 1 Course
The CrossFit Nutrition 1 Course, found HERE, is a premium online program that teaches the foundation of CrossFit’s nutrition recommendations and makes them accessible and easily actionable so you can start seeing results. Learn how to use nutrition to increase wellness and optimize your performance.