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Living in the Zone


Living in the Zone

150 wallball shots (20/14)

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We’ve all heard the statement that nutrition shouldn’t be approached from the stance of a diet but rather a change in lifestyle, but the hard part for many is figuring out how to make an actual lasting effect. Yes, it requires planning. Yes, it means preparing your own food (to some extent). Yes, it means knowing what is in your food. And yes, it is “harder” than just grabbing stuff off the shelf and cramming your face. Food, for many, has taken a backseat to the endless list of priorities that take up most of our lives, so the first step in a lifestyle change is making it a top priority.
We’ve been on-board with Paleo since we first learned about it but left to my own devices I can quickly overeat protein and fat and neglect healthy carbs (veggies). For the past 6 weeks or so we’ve been Zoning our meals. Our general rule is to Zone anything that we make at home, which for us is about 80% of what we eat in a week. We don’t stress when we go to friends for dinner or happy hours, but if we make something it really doesn’t make it any harder to also weigh it.
For us, this works better as a “lifestyle” because it allows wiggle room for things like drinks (which can still be Zoned). It also allows items like rice which makes some meals easier to balance when I’m tired of eating greens. It also helps to cut out small non-Paleo things that I may buy just out of boredom and because it’s there (I love egg rolls). Lastly, it helps on days when I have an off meal because I can just simply adjust the rest of my meals for that day based on how I slipped. For instance, if I eat a meal that is too heavy in carbs I can just adjust the rest of my meals that day to compensate.
It’s not a perfect system, but neither is life so for me this approach works. My clothes fit well, I’m happy with how I look, and my performances are as good as ever. Combine that with the fact that if something comes up that doesn’t fit the Zone or Paleo and I can still participate and it’s a recipe for longevity.
What methods have you incorporated into your daily life to bump nutrition up the priority list? Post to comments!

2 Responses

  1. K-Dub

    Awesome post. Good for you for getting back to the zone. Argh, NUTRITION is one of my biggest bugaboos. I’ve been counting macros as of late and trying to mostly make the highest and best choices I can within that format, meaning choosing real food over a processed food which fits into my macro scheme. I’ve gotten great results when I have stayed mostly on track. As for the longevity/lifestyle piece, this is where I sometimes stumble, traveling and sticking to my plan has been difficult in some instances (eg..traveling to make sure a parent is ok post medical event, or helping to put on an event in remote (food desert) location and someone turns up the fridge so high they freeze your healthy food). Knowing how to adjust macros for special events, like heavy heavy training events (eg weightlifting camp) has been challenging but it’s one of my longterm goals to keep working at it. It’s worth the challenge, for sure. Thanks as always for the inspiration to keep trying.

  2. Bill Oldenslo

    Since I am a morning Roots person, I pre-make my breakfast for the entire week. It is simple to do on Sunday and gives me no excuses to miss a post-wod meal or eat some junk. I scramble 10 organic eggs (2/breakfast), brown-up 1lb of organic 95% lean burger (3 oz/breakfast – moisture loss) and stick both in one of 5 small glass pyrex containers. As part of each breakfast, I warm-up and eat a 12oz bag of organic frozen peas/carrots/corn. Not the perfect Zone meal but much better then my prior (pre-Roots) breakfast routine.