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The PR Your Life Food Challenge


The PR Your Life Food Challenge

30 rounds for time of:
5 Wall ball shots, 20 pound ball
3 Handstand push-ups
225 (155) pound Power clean, 1 rep

A "PR" is a personal record.  It's the best workout or lifting score you've posted for a specific movement or workout.  Or, it's the best 6 weeks you've ever committed to your life...

A “PR” is a personal record. It’s the best workout or lifting score you’ve posted for a specific movement or workout. Or, it’s the best 6 weeks you’ve ever committed to your life…

Presenting the PR Your Life Food Challenge

Fall is here.  Maybe you were a mountain babe or an altitude hottie or maybe you sipped one too many beers while partying it up this summer.    Or maybe you’re ready for the next evolution in your pursuit toward lifelong health and fitness.

Whatever the reason, we have crafted the food challenge that brings together the look good naked side of the way we eat and train with the health and longevity indicators that make it all worth our while now and long long into the future.

This fall’s challenge is a pilot study that CrossFit Roots and Dr. Molly Ware have put together to evaluate cardiac risk factors with a Paleo Diet.  Our goal is to use this initial study as a launching point for a spring study in which we pursue IRB approval (translation: a legit scientific study!).  So if you’ve ever read a New York Times article about food that cited all sorts of studies that you thought – “why don’t they do a Paleo study on this shit!?” – then this is your chance to be part of the change!

Molly is a cardiologist here in town (and a Roots athlete), and she is very interested in lifestyle factors as the mainstay for preventing and/or controlling disease and promoting health.   We know that the athletes at Roots are a dedicated, hardworking crew and we figured that a food challenge would be a great source of data since the participants already track their food intake in detail and we will have data on body weight and body fat percentage before and after the challenge.   This time around though, we are making the focal indicator lab testing.  This means participants will need to get a lab draw (yes, a needle in a vein) twice: at the beginning and end of the study.

We will examine: fasting lipid profile (cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides); fasting glucose (blood sugar), and hs-CRP (highly sensitive C reactive protein which is a marker of inflammation in the body).  Our hypothesis is that through the 6 week Paleo food challenge, these parameters will improve!  And this means that overall health has improved.

Labs will be drawn at one of the Boulder Community Hospital Labs (we will provide a list of locations).  Labs must be fasting which means no food for 12 hours.  The lab work is a required component of this challenge.

The Paleo Diet mimics the way our modern ancestors ate before the advent of modern agriculture.  As a starting point, it eliminates all grains, dairy, and legumes, in addition to all processed varieties of Paleo Diet mimicry.  We’ll post more on the Paleo Diet this week.

Here are the Dates You Need to Know:

October 20th – Sign-up Week (Sign-up Open MONDAY, spaces limited)
October 27th – Intake Week and Chalk Talks
November 3rd – Challenge Begins, 6am
December 13th – Challenge Ends, 6pm

This challenge is a little bit different than past challenges as you have to commit BEFORE learning all of the details of the challenge.  This is for science reasons people!

Here’s the information you’ll need to know:

Structure of the Challenge

Next week (October 20-27) is the initial sign-up week.  During this time you can ask us as many questions as you want and should we be able to answer your question without compromising the challenge – we’ll do so!

From October 27th-November 2nd you will do an initial athlete intake which will be comprised of a dunk tank or other body fat test, blood work done at a local hospital lab, and a four day food log of what you’re eating now (before the challenge starts).  You will also be required to attend a Challenge Chalk Talk at one of two times:

Thursday, October 30th at 7:00am
Sunday, November 2nd at 10:30am

From November 3rd-December 13th, you’ll live the challenge!  You will log your food every day for 6 weeks.  You will be assigned to work with a specific coach who will guide you through questions, scenarios, and help you succeed.

What Can I Eat?
This is a straight up Paleo Challenge.  We’ll provide a food list of what Paleo foods are allowed.

What About Alcohol?
Alcohol will be allowed in specified quantities and types.

What About Thanksgiving?
Thanksgiving Day will come with a separate set of allowances that will enable you to participate in any household feast without feeling socially awkward.  It will not be a free for all day.

Will there be a Zone component to this challenge?

What About Halloween Candy?
You eat Halloween candy?  

The challenge total cost is $218.

The lab work portion of the challenge will cost $98 for before and after tests paid directly to the lab.  This is the self pay price.  If you have not had these particular labs done within the past year and you would like to go through your insurance for the first set of labs you may.   We cannot guarantee the price through your insurance (i.e, individual plans vary in terms of coverage and deductible).  It is very unlikely that insurance would pay for the second set of labs 6 weeks later, so we recommend self pay at that point, which would be $49.  The cleanest option is $98 for both sets. 

The resources, coaching, and food log assessment component of the challenge will cost $120.

In addition, athletes will have two methods for body fat testing – the standard dunk tank test that we have often used (for a fee) or a basic body fat scan (at no cost).

Questions?  Post to comments. 

10 Responses

  1. Eric

    Awesome, I want to do this but so many questions:
    Does the challenge allow for any cheat meals during the weeks that are outside of the Paleo realm?
    Would love to see that list of allowed foods that was mentioned. How strict is Roots paleo? Specifically, are cheese and/or brown rice allowed?
    What are the alcohol allowances and types?
    Why am I even asking these crazy questions if I’m serious about getting healthy and back in shape?

    1. Great questions Eric! Answered below,
      The challenge does not include cheat meal allowances although there are a few special considerations for holidays during this time period that do allow for some non-specific Paleo foods.
      We won’t release the foods list prior to the info Chalk Talks; however, the challenge is 100% Paleo so food items sun as dairy (cheese) and grains (brown rice) will not be permitted.
      Exact alcohol allowances in terms of quantities will be released at the Chalk Talks. All Paleo-inspired alcohols will be permitted (tequila, wine). Beer will not be permitted, not even gluten-free beer.
      Yes, you shouldn’t worry too much about the specifics. Just do the challenge:).

  2. Tim S

    Will the challenge include a mandatory number of weekly workouts? If so, must they be done at a xfit box? Thanksgiving travel and all, you know…

    1. There will not a workout component of this challenge. You will have to log your workouts but you are not required to do a specified number each week. Although we recommend that you workout at least 3x/week;).

    1. Mable or Megan

      I’m actually gone the whole week so no dunk either, can I get blood work done the week before and a caliper fat test or something?