Eating clean can seem daunting, especially if you’re not equipped with a ton of recipes to get started. Also, falling victim to things that come in boxes is all too easy when you’re running out of time. So, here are some yummy clean recipes to get you back on the right track. They not only taste good, but they look good too (who said healthy food had to be bland in any form or fashion)! And for more ideas on clean eating, follow my Pinterest board So Fresh & So Clean!
Injuries… Let’s talk about them.
In or out of CrossFit, injuries are bound to happen because let’s face it, we’re not super human but despite being privy to that fact, it’s been an incredibly difficult subject to touch on for two reasons: The first is that trying to “sell” people on CrossFit without an injury is a task in itself, let alone trying to “sell” people on CrossFit with an injury – it really doesn’t make much sense: “Wait, so you’re telling me CrossFit doesn’t equal injury, yet you have tendonitis in your hand as a result of CrossFit.” The second reason is that I personally have never really had an “injury” up until recently, and certainly not one that has lasted as long as mine did. I was feeling really helpless, and having a difficult time conveying my struggles in conversation, which is why I wanted to write this article.
So, on to the injury. As most of you know, I participated in the 2012 CrossFit Games Open workouts. Not just as a CrossFit lover following along with the workouts, but as someone who paid the $20, created an athlete profile on the official CrossFit Games website, and publically posted numbers along side incredible athletes like Camille LeBlanc-Bazinet, Katie Hogan, Julie Foucher & the rest. Like so many athletes, I pushed myself to my absolute limit and executed movements with weights (or reps) I had never done before: 75 lb snatch at 10 reps, chest to bar pullups for the first time, recycling toes to bar, 150 wall balls! and 75 lb push press at 51 reps. I thought for sure if I was going to get hurt, it would be because of the snatch movement (it’s the one I have the least experience with) but it was the push press that did it. Prior to the Open, I was really only comfortable doing 45 lb push press, so it was a 30 pound jump for me, which took a toll on my right hand, wrist and forearm. As a result, I got tendonitis which lasted for what seemed like forever. The following are behaviors that I did to deal, that you should NOT do:
- Don’t Stop Eating Clean - One of the worst things you can do is start eating crap. I didn’t know how to emotionally cope with my injury, and so I ate, which in retrospect was completely dumb. I was limited in my movements in CrossFit due to the injury, which means less work being done, and consuming more food than I was when I was doing a ton of work, which equals donut belly, lethargic responses, and slower times within the limited movements. Also, in order for your body to heal quicker, it is so imperative that you continue eating clean. Don’t do what I did and go all beast mode on a box of pop tarts.
- Don’t Compare Yourself To Your CrossFit Comrades - This is a really difficult one. There are specific women I was about the same level with as far as strength and times go, and I always chased them in WODs. Then I got injured, and it seemed like they started PR’ing a ton of movements. I noticed my times and weights falling farther and farther behind theirs – it didn’t feel quite equal anymore. All I could think about is how fast I was sinking below the curve, and I tortured myself with limiting beliefs of how I would never catch up once I was healed. But comparing your injured self to non-injured athletes is a complete waste of time, because you have no control over the situation. In order to heal quicker, you must focus on the positive. Acknowledge that you’re injured, but imagine yourself healing and getting back to where you left off. Oh, and mobility helps too! Like, a lot.
- Don’t Focus On Time - Seriously, folks. Have you ever stood watching and waiting for a pot of water to boil? It’s agonizing. The same goes for your injury. Stop focusing on how long you’ve been injured or how long you anticipate the injury to last. This will suck the life out of you and make your recovery appear painstakingly longer. Instead, focus on what you can do to heal. The more effort you put into focusing your thoughts on other (positive) things, the quicker it will (seem) to heal!
- Don’t Stop Going To The Box – My hand was messed up, and my first thoughts were: “Great, now I can’t do bar work, pullups, pushups, double unders or burpees . . . so, what do I do?” For the first couple of weeks, I laid low at home feeling sorry for myself but then a friend told me (paraphrasing), “You can still squat. This is the perfect opportunity for you to build that strength, as it’s fundamental to your success in CrossFit.” Uh, duh. Why didn’t I think of that? Well, it’s because I was so busy focusing on what I couldn’t do, that I failed to see what I could do. So, I went to each class 30 minutes early and started working on my back squat and boy has it paid off!
Hey guys! Rebecca The Red checking in with you and sharing progress. My first week of eating Zone went pretty well, all things considered. I stopped weighing myself a long time ago, so I don’t know what kind of progress I’ve made in terms of pounds, but there’s a noticeable difference. Besides, I’m not really doing this for weight loss. Regardless of intent, my work slacks are loose again, which means change is happening! The meals I ate for the week were as follows (3 block):
1 cup almond milk
1 large scoop protein powder
1 cup strawberries
1/2 cup blueberries
1 tomato (sliced),
1/2 Tbs guacamole,
1 (oz) string cheese
1 3 oz can tuna,
3 tsp light mayo,
1 slice of wheat bread,
1/2 green apple
1 cup fresh strawberries,
1/4 cup cottage cheese,
1 macadamia nut
3 oz chicken breast (sautéed in tsp olive oil, garlic & crushed red peppers),
2 1/2 cups kale
On Monday, I substituted a 4 oz glass of red wine for the peach (rough day). Tuesday & Wednesday I have night class, so I got two chicken tacos (fresco style) from Taco Bell. Friday I was running late and didn’t have time to make a breakfast shake, so I got a bacon/gouda sandwich from Starbucks and removed one slice of the artisan bread. Then Friday night, I went to the CrossFit 310 anniversary party, where I had one piece of chicken (about the size of my palm), a hand-size portion of greens with cheese, strawberries, nuts, and a small amount of balsamic dressing. The weekend rolled around, and as usual, I had a lot of trouble keeping up with my weekly routine, which means I didn’t get all my meals in on time. Then I went to a Roger Waters concert where I consumed many beers & a pretzel (because I was starving from lack of food). And in my boozy state, I also had some chips after the concert (because we all know about post-boozin’ munchies)….and yeah. Sunday was even worse, but we won’t go into that. I’m really trying to make it work though, which has proven somewhat difficult because I’m at the end of the semester (two weeks left).
And so it begins, again. As some of you know, I participated in my CrossFit gym’s Live Fit challenge back in January, and won 3rd place! Winning cash was great (which bought me some sweet new CrossFit kicks), but the physical results I achieved were far more rewarding. I’d love to say I sustained those eating habits after I won – the eating / sleeping / hydration habits that contributed to 10+ Personal Records – but the truth is, when I injured my hand during the 12.3 Open WOD, I (sort of) gave up on eating that way. The thing is, I had never dealt with an injury before, and certainly not one that would drastically limit how I spent my time at the box. No amount of reading material can prepare you for the psychological response to your first injury. And so, I ate.
But isn’t that life? CrossFit athletes will tell you, nutrition can be a rollercoaster ride. Life happens, and sometimes your best intentions get derailed. It just so happens I’m on an up right now, so I thought I would give strict nutrition another spin. This time though, I wanted to try Zone because my coach says it’s optimal for CrossFit athletes.
So this post marks week one. I will be updating weekly to track progress, note any changes, difficulties, and give a breakdown of what I’m eating. The very top photo is a collage of my before photos which were taken on Monday (May 14th). Let’s see where I end up in four weeks!