I’ve recently talked a bit about my nutrition (or lack thereof), supplements, and food in general. Okay, that last one is a throwback. I don’t even remember what it’s linking to except that I wrote it. I hope it’s a good one. I’m continually in a cycle of paying attention to what I’m putting in my body, making sure I get the right vitamins and minerals (this takes up 30% of my life), then throwing it all out the window (70% of my life). Well, now I’m throwing myself all in and participating in the “Eat to Perform” challenge at my CrossFit box.
Basically I’m facing twenty-one days of body-shocking misery (maybe I’m slightly exaggerating) in hopes that I’ll be healthier, recover faster, and maybe set some habits that I don’t break after a week. Maaayyyyyybbbbeeeee. I mean, it’s a pretty big stretch that I’ll be able to last, but there’s some winning incentives. Plus you know, there’s that whole being healthier thing, too. That’s always a perk.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never been a fan of cleanses, detoxes, or diet fads. I’m still not. For the most part, this isn’t any of those things which is why I jumped on it so quickly. I love a challenge. We function better when we eat nutrient dense, whole foods (but I really love to eat everything that is the opposite of this) and I have a lot of goals now that I’m running again. As the packet put together by CFNC states, there are 23 other hours in the day where bad habits can completely derail and undermine all that effort we put in during our workouts. And oh boy, my bad habits do.
Essentially I’m going spend twenty one days (starting on Monday) cutting out added sugars, sweeteners, and refined foods, replacing it all with wholesome, nutrient rich foods. It’s not a fad or diet, but eating the healthy way. Granted, we’re also cutting out sweeter fruits for the challenge (and only the challenge — here’s the somewhat “detox” part) because sweet fruits can sometimes cause issues when trying to get rid of sugar cravings. While I don’t eat a ton of artificially sweetened things (creamer aside), I do eat a lot carbs.
The scoring system is entirely honor-based. For every day you follow the eating guidelines (unlimited on the “yes” list, limited on the “limit” list, nothing on the “no” list), you get five points. Then you can get an additional point for each of the following: drinking 8 glasses of water, getting at least 7 hours of sleep, performing at least 15 minutes of mobility outside the box (yoga, ball on feet at work, foam rolling at home), and filling out your daily challenge log. Each point at the end of the challenge equals one entry into the drawing. The drawing will have two winners, a female and male who split the pot from all $5 entries, and then the person with the most points also wins a $100 gift card to CFNC.
I think the biggest challenge for me will be the lack of pizza, pasta, and creamer for my coffee. Then there’s the whole no alcohol thing (okay, so I might have it planned that Superbowl Sunday is totally out of question for abiding by this), but I’ve been there, done that during my last half marathon goal training. If I can handle three months, I can surely handle three weeks!
I’m really excited to challenge myself with people actively trying to do the same thing. We have a facebook group (I might just call it the support group) to share recipes, struggles, whatever you choose. I’m not expecting these three weeks to completely alter my eating habits. In fact, I don’t really want it to. I want to develop good habits, eat more real food, feel better about myself, cook more, run faster… but after the challenge, I won’t totally deny myself things because they don’t fall into these categories. In the end, I want to make smarter choices, a little bit like 95% smart choices and 5% “make me happy” choices.
I’ve convinced J to do it with me, at least for the food part – he’s not big on the “mobility” portion. I wish he was, I thought it would be fun to have a little challenge between the two of us – loser pays for dinner! Speaking of dinner, after seeing J’s sister get a spiralizer for Christmas, I bought one for myself. Who’s ready for zucchini noodles?
There you have it. Enough talking about all the things I should be doing and time to do them! I sense my paycheck today is going towards my credit card, which will just be built up again at Trader Joes this weekend… Good thing this sickness is starting to finally weasel its way out of my body – likely into some other unsuspecting victim’s body – because I have my shopping and prep work cut out for me!