Eat Real Food

Whatever your nutrition needs, Eugene CrossFit has the expertise and can help!  Nutrition is a huge part of your fitness success and we want you to get results as quickly as possible. Many times you see folks working so hard at they gym and they don’t realize the following will happen without a decent improvement in their nutrition: (The following is also true with lack of sleep)


[content_box title=”Bodyfat Results will be Slowed” image=””]When we see folks improve and then hit a wall, this is ‘failure to thrive’ and is a 100% diet related issue. You can lose some inches without nutrition, but not all the way to meet your goals. And less bodyfat means less weight to carry around in the workout (fast running, more pullups, and muscleups! yay!)[/content_box]
[content_box title=”Recovery will Take Forever” image=””]When you don’t eat the right quantity and in the right amounts, inflammation prevents recovery.[/content_box]
[content_box title=”Injuries won’t Heal”  image=””]Same thing as #2, inflammation mixed with not getting the right foods in your body.[/content_box]
[content_box last=”yes” title=”Suck Factor”  image=””]Many people don’t realize it, but living your life on non-optimal fuel generally makes you suck. They’ve just sucked so long its become the norm. Here’s what I mean: Anyone who makes a drastic change in their nutrition suddenly has more energy, less tempers, sleeps better, and is a more loving person.[/content_box][/content_boxes]
I know, I know, nutrition sucks. It’s hard. But lets realize something first – perfect nutrition is impossible. But there are things you can do to make it better. Focusing on Quality first, then Quantity I find is the best method for improving nutrition.


Approaches to Food

Quality of food can be improved several ways: the step by step approach, or, as I like to call it, the “ALL IN” method; quantity must not be overlooked as well.

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Most people do much better on the Step by Step method rather than the ALL IN.

1. Attend the On-Ramp class on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6pm. This is a class for beginners that has a workout in it, but we focus ALOT on nutrition. We give little bits of homework, answer questions, etc, etc. The workouts are often shorter and help prepare new athletes for the daily Workout of the Day, but even in this class we’ve seen veteran CrossFitters get more results here than attending the regular workout of the day classes because the focus on nutrition is huge. Try to attend 12 of these classes. (they are on a 12 class rotation)
2. If Monday, Wednesday and Friday evening is an impossibility for you, find the coach at the class you usually come to and they will get you started on a Step-by-Step approach.

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Some people are ‘all or nothing’ people and can’t stand to bite off only what they can chew. Realize that if you take the ALL IN method that your best is good enough. While 100% is the effort, it turns out to be about 80% – but that is ok and part of the plan.

1. Find a coach, preferably the one that you work with on a day-to-day basis, and let him know what you’re doing. Each Coach at Eugene Crossfit is trained and constantly working to help you on your nutrition goals. Keep him posted on how your doing when you get a chance, before or after the WOD. If you don’t get a chance, toss him emails and keep him in the loop. He will help you get everything out of your hard effort.
2. Keep a food log for the first bit of what you eat. Bring it in or email it to your coach to get encouragement and help.
3. Focus on the quality of your food. A great resource is The Paleo Diet book from amazon. It’s about $10.
4. Replace all of the grains and starch in your diet. For the full shopping list and a full instruction of how to do this month, read and follow Robb Wolfs Rant at the end of this page and follow it for one entire month. Go for ONE FULL MONTH without a single drop of gluten or dairy – and follow the guide below as closely as possible. Your food bill will defiantly go up for this month, but this month will change your life, I promise.
5. Start taking fish oil ASAP, here is a useful tool that will help you determine the quantity. But realize that it will tell you to take a lot, so if you are not comfortable with this amount, just start with what you are comfortable with and ramp it up when you see the results. As you clean up your food, you need less and less fish oil to counteract the inflmmation. CLICK HERE FOR THE FISH OIL CALCULATOR

6. At the end of your month – DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT dive in and eat all the foods you missed like crazy. This is the most important part of your month! Now that you have a baseline of healthy, use this as an opportunity to learn about your body and what foods affect you. Try to introduce gluten back in. Slowly. Take notes over that day and the day after. How’d you feel? Three to seven days later, try dairy. How’d you feel then?

[tab id=3]Once you have the quality of food dialed in, its time to work on Quantity.

First, a disclaimer. Folks with a previous history of a food disorder should be really careful to not go overboard with messing with the quantity of their food. Much of the results can be found with figuring out the Quality side of things, and if working with the quantity doesn’t improve your well being and mental health, adjustments need to be made so it does. Find a coach to help you stay happy and on track.

1. Talk to your coach. Pull her aside before or after a class, or email her.  Your coach will teach you about the zone and help you determine how many ‘blocks’ you should eat, teach you how to zone and get you set on the right course.  I can’t emphasize this enough – many folks have started the zone completely wrong and have tortured themselves, get with a coach!
2.  Read cfjissue21_May04 about how to zone.
3.  Read 38_05_off_the_crack about starting the zone, called ‘getting off the crack’.     The first two weeks can be really hard!
4.  Read FastFoodDec02.  Zoning is NOT more expensive or less convenient then fast food!
5.  I prefer a food scale (you can get it at bed bath and beyond) but you can also use measuring cups.
6.  Go online and look for zone measurements and get print outs of a big list of foods and how many zone points it is.  Print the papers out and tape them to the inside of your cuppard or someplace in the kitchen so you can find it.  If you have a food scale, look for the print out that has it measured in grams or ounces – if not, get the one with tablespoons and cups.
7.   Weight / measure your food for 4 weeks.
8.  Three weeks later, you should be able to eyeball your food without measuring it, go back every few months and remeasure for a couple weeks to keep you on pace.
9.  Make sure to have a coach continually helping you.  Changes need to be made in the zone to perfect it for the fuel you need, and adjustments as you go along with it.


Hardcore Nutrition by Robb Wolf

Here is a great piece explaining our stance by CrossFit NorCal owner and Nutrittion guru Robb Wolf. Wolf is a former research biochemist specializing in lipid metabolism. His CV includes research at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and graduate work with Prof. Loren Cordain of Colorado State University, author of The Paleo Diet and The Paleo Diet for Athletes. Robb is a co-founder of NorCal Strength and Conditioning, a review editor for the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, and a co-founder of The Performance Menu.

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[tab id=1]I am stunned by a few facts:

1-People do not know how to cook in general. Microwave meals and fast food seem to predominate. Sandwiches and other grab-n-go crap are the norm. Food quality matters. You need to learn how to cook. Acknowledge, accept, and move on.

2-People are “too busy. If you are “too busy to cook you need to reevaluate your life. How much time do you spend watching TV? Be honest and realistic because if you legitimately do not have time to feed yourself correctly you are heading towards serious health problems.

3-People go absolutely fetal if they do not have their bread, rice, pasta and all the other garbage carbs. Inevitably the question arises “how do I cook this? It is simply a cover for “I want my comfort food. If you want results you need to alter what you are doing. I know this seems obvious, but apparently it is not! If you want to keep doing the same old thing join a Globo gym, don′t go (most people don′t) and keep eating what you have been eating. Wasn′t that easy?! Not surprisingly you will continue to get the same results.

4-As day follows night, eating can only follow shopping. You cannot and likely should not eat out all the time. That means you need to stock your pantry and have the vittles on hand to cook nutritious, possibly even tasty meals. Hence the handy guide that follows. You CAN do this. We have clients who are not very bright (not naming names) who do this. They are committed and will not accept failure. If they fall off the pony, they get up, catch the lil′buggar and get back on. If you are not committed to this please step away from the ride, do something else and leave this hour open for someone who will listen, grow and reap the rewards this program can offer. All right, enough finger wagging, here is your shopping guide.

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Trader Joes has a great selection of frozen berries and vegetables. Hit the farmers market and buy what is in season. Avoid bananas and other tropical fruit. Buy local. Many of the supermarkets have anemic looking produce sections I′d swear I see the same avocado from week to week in one store. Try buying some non-traditional veggies like Napa cabbage and some other goodies. Expand your horizons for crying out loud! That said however you should ALWAYS have the following in the freezer from Trader Joes:Broccoli, green beans, asparagus, blue berries.TJ′s has some other frozen veggies that are good but you MUST have these on hand. You can easily throw together a meal with some meat or chicken and a half bag of these veggies. Remember the excuses above of not having enough time? Keep this stuff on hand and you will have no problems. FYI-We make random checks to people′s homes to verify veggie stocks€¦just kidding, but man we should!

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Trader Joes and Long’s Meat Market are good for grass fed meat. This is your first choice with all varieties of meat. Grass fed is better than organic. Free Range chicken, wild meat if available. Conventional cuts like London broil for beef and pork loin are good options if the organic and or grass fed options are not available. Costco has good prices and good quality. Stock up! People tend to make bad food choices when they run out. Don′t be one of “those people.Vegetarian? Find another trainer, I will not work with you. You won′t make progress and all we will do is argue. Someone else can take your money and watch you not make progress.

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Long’s Meat Market and The Fisherman’s Market are great places to pick up fresh fish in Eugene (No, I do not have stock in them) has a good selection of frozen fish and shellfish. They also have a canned Wild Alaskan Salmon. Great stuff for salads. When you buy any type of salmon make sure it is WILD. “Fresh does not mean wild. They also carry a mild sardine called “Bella Olhao€. I cannot stand other sardines. These are actually pretty darn yummy. Again great for salads, just pour in the olive oil they are packed in.

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  • Eggs- Omega-3 enriched only. Costco has a great deal on these and they are top quality. Trader Joes is even better! Any major supermarket carries these however.
  • Coconut milk- If you like curries this is a great carrier. Safeway and Raleys carry a Thai brand € Chakoh€. No idea on the pronunciation. The two Asian food stores in town carry this one as well. Just a personal favorite but any coconut is good coconut milk.
  • Olive oil- Pacific Sun or one of the other top shelf brands will lighten your pocketbook a bunch but they are amazing. You get what you pay for with olive oils. Trader Joes has a good base model that is ~$7.99/liter. This is a good day-to-day olive oil.
  • Tomato paste/sauce Trader Joes to the rescue again. They have a canned marinara called “Sugo di Pomodoro€. You can pour this over any meat/veggie dish and LOVE it.
  • Spices- The more the better. If you do not know how to cook, learn. We have a DVD in the works. Google specific recipes, look for examples on youtube. If you MUST watch television then watch the food networkunless Battle Star Galactica is on. You MUST watch BSG.
  • Coffee- Great. No problem here. Just make sure your getting plenty of water as well. Buy a stovetop espresso maker from Pete′s coffee and prepare to get wired.

All Items listed below can be found at Trader Joes, the Farmers Market or your jumbo grocery store.

  • Seeds
  • Nuts (raw, but not cashews or peanuts)
  • Nut butters
  • Organic fruit and vegetables
  • Unsweetened coconut flakes
  • Nut flours (almond, pecan, and chestnut)

Based on the shopping list you could probably figure out what you are supposed to eat here is a hint: it′s not bread, rice, pasta nor potatoes. What IS on the menu? Glad you asked:

Protein – Every Meal:

  • Chicken – 3-4oz
  • Beef – 3-4 oz
  • Fish – 3-4 oz
  • Eggs – 2-3 whole eggs (yolks are incredible for you. Do not throw them out.)

Now I′m assuming you are pretty sharp but oddly enough a few things seem to slip by people repeatedly. When I say “every meal I in fact mean EVERY BLESSED MEAL. This is especially critical if you are trying to lose body fat. Another frequently confused point is the topic of “protein. If you are fighting for survival in a 3rd world country then yes, beans and rice count as protein. At NorCal S&C it most assuredly DOES NOT. You need chicken, beef, fish, pork lamb, turkey are you picking up what I′m putting down? If you think beans, nuts or Tofu count as protein please re-read the vegetarian clause above and follow those directions appropriately.

Vegetables – Every Meal:

Vegetables – all varieties as much as you want, especially:

  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Cabbage
  • Asparagus
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes

Newsflash-More vegetables exist than those listed above, you may eat those€¦unless they appear on the “no-no€ list below.

Fat – Every meal:

Nuts: raw or LIGHTLY roasted and preferably unsalted – small handful

  • Almonds
  • Pecans
  • Walnuts
  • NO PEANUTS (peanuts are a bean not a nut!)
  • Avocado – ½ of medium sized one
  • Olive Oil – use as salad dressing – 1-2 Tbs.

Newsflash 2- Fat does not make you fat. We recommend a moderate to low carb diet. It is healthy and effective. Ask questions, check blood lipids but for crying out loud, just do this stuff for a month! Do you see ANY processed food in this? Any sugar? Trans fats? No, no and no. It′s whole, natural foods and you will thrive on it.

Fruit – Occasionally, always with protein!

In order of preference:

  • All berries
  • Melons
  • Oranges
  • Grapefruit
  • Tangerines
  • Apples

Eat what is in season and local.

Coffee – Espresso or Americano′s only – preferably black – no sugar or artificial sweeteners!


  • All flour products (bread/cake/cookies/scones/tortillas/pastries etc.)
  • All sugars
  • No Jamba juice! – Too much sugar!
  • No Dairy (cheese/milk/butter/cottage cheese, etc)
  • No Mochas, No Latte, No Frappaccino′s
  • No Artificial Sweeteners
  • No potatoes, corn beans or other starchy vegetables



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Why Choose Us?

  • Eugene CrossFit staff has been there and done it!
  • Talk with our Athletes; their personal results speak for themselves!
  • Our group environment is more fun and accountable!
  • Access to our facebook receipt page; it’s awesome!
  • You will eat real food and lots of it!
  • You won’t suck any more!


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What Clients Say

[testimonial name=”Troy Brost”]I did the “Whole30” challenge; it may have been the worst 30 days of my life. I felt “hung-over” throughout nearly the entire challenge. Had I not tried “Whole30”, I would have never believed we truly “are what we eat. Over 3 years I changed my lifestyle and lost over 60 pounds. My formula was simple: year 1, food quantity control; year 2, added CrossFit; year 3, added food quality control.[/testimonial]
[testimonial name=”Daren Kromarek” company=”EC Coach”]”You want to improve your fitness?  Eat right … call Eugene CrossFit.”[/testimonial]