Why I Don’t Listen to My CrossFit Coach’s Nutrition Recommendations
I love my CrossFit coach. She’s spectacular. She puts up with the fact that I’m very motivated – sometimes. That I’m extremely dedicated to a healthy lifestyle – most of the time. That I consider cake to be an essential food group and there’s nothing she says that is going to change my mind about that.
I have a lot of respect for her. She’s a fitness expert, and she lives and breathes what she teaches. She looks fantastic. I can tell that she knows what she’s doing and I trust her when it comes to my physical training. When I attend her classes, I know I’m going to get a great workout and that she’s going to keep me in line when I’m slowing down or doing something wrong.
Since I started with CrossFit, I’ve been getting some great results. I still love barre and there’s nothing that gets me more pumped than dance-based workouts. But CrossFit is something I’ve been enjoying a lot as something new and refreshing, not to mention challenging.
That said, my instructor, as wonderful as she is, swears by the Paleo diet. She thinks that it is the absolute perfect match for anyone doing CrossFit and she regularly recommends it. She feels that if you’re doing Paleo or you’re doing CrossFit, if you’re not doing the other one, too, you’re just holding yourself back.
I’m not an expert in either areas, but I still disagree. I respect her and her opinions, but that’s not going to make me change my mind about the way I eat. I have every intention of keeping up CrossFit, but my healthy, nutritious, cake-inclusive diet isn’t going to change just because cavemen didn’t eat what I do.
That is, after all, what the basis behind the Paleolithic diet is all about. The premise is that eating like our Paleolithic ancestors allows us to give our bodies what it was originally designed to consume. As a result, we build more lean muscle mass, burn more fat and recover more quickly from intense workouts.
I have huge problems accepting that reasoning. After all, our Paleolithic ancestors didn’t eat what their bodies were designed to eat. They ate whatever they could get their hands on. Their bodies either adapted or they died. Speaking of dying off, I can’t really think about that time period as my ideal longevity goal. During that age, men lived to an average of 35 years and women lived to an average of 30 years old. That statistic includes the huge infant mortality rate. So to be more fair, if you survived infancy, you’d likely live to be 43.5 years old. That just doesn’t sound very good to me! I plan to live about twice that long, thank you very much.
Also, if my rant isn’t enough to convince you, then have a look at the results of a recent (2017) study published in the Sports journal. Its title is “Sports Nutrition Knowledge, Perceptions, Resources, and Advice Given by Certified CrossFit Trainers.” It showed that the Paleo, ketogenic and other types of low-carb diets CrossFit trainers often recommend have no significant scientific proof whatsoever to support claims that they will boost performance.