On Monday January 15th, 2018 I started a 30 day food and fitness challenge run by friend and local personal trainer John Ferraro of Fast Pace PT.
I want to talk a little bit about this experience over the course of the 30 days. Part of it is accountability for me. The other is to hopefully provide some helpful tips to the reader in the same vein as my recent post about challenge success.
Let’s dive in to some of the details.
What’s the Challenge?
-30 days of macros nutrition plan, eating smaller meals more frequently. Generally, I’m eating less fat and refined carbs than I normally would. No Sugar, Refined Carbs, Dairy, Beans, and Alcohol. Macros breakdown for those who really get into the numbers (I don’t) are 33% Fat, 36% Protein, 31% Carbs.
-30 days of workouts which are more bodybuilding in nature than my typical strength routines. This means more volume (higher reps), more frequent workouts (6 per week), and adding in cardio! This will include some fasting morning cardio (jogging for me) as well as a focus on High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) to prepare for the CrossFit Open.
Why Am I Doing This?
My main goal is to trim a few extra pounds of fat and gain high intensity fitness prior to the CrossFit Open. Last year I was happy to finish in the top 15% of my Rx Master’s (35-39) Division with fairly limited cardio training in the lead up. This past year I’ve continued to focus more on strength than the sort of WODs that always show up in the Open. My original plan to ramp up competition training ended the day before Thanksgiving when I suffered a Core Muscle Injury. Having spent 6 weeks successfully rehabbing, I’m ready again to ramp up training. This time I’m on a compressed schedule, thus the challenge.
Finally a note on weight. I generally don’t care about my weight. But, doing tons of burpees, chest to bar pull ups, handstand push ups and other body weight movements in the Open are MUCH easier for me when I’m closer to 190 than 200 lbs.
How Was Week 1?
I did not dial in the nutrition as prescribed this week as much as I plan to the next 3 weeks. Part of that was simply practical. I generally eat a higher fat diet and thus had a lot of delicious sausage and goat cheese and grass-fed hot dogs (etc) in the house. I’m flat out not going to waste quality food. So I did the best I could and grocery shopped this week to make next week much closer to the macro parameters.
I also quit coffee this week!
I’m joining my wife in solidarity of her quitting coffee. So I slowly tapered coffee all week to the point where Friday I had zero. Even though I think coffee is generally fine from a health standpoint, I want to give my body a break from the stimulant. I figured, while I’m quitting hard cider for a month, might as well kick coffee too!
I felt a bit hungry this week to be honest. But thankfully, my month of intermittent fasting experiment prepared me to handle this from a psychological standpoint. I sipped a lot of water and spread out my meals as planned. The workouts were fun! I actually enjoyed going out for a few jogs this week. Something I haven’t done in years. I added some core and abdominal work to every workout. All in all, I really enjoyed the first week. For those counting, I lost 1.5 lbs.
Check back for more updates as we go!
Yours in Health & Strength,
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Last modified: January 23, 2018