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Here we are for our third installment of the CFR Nutrition Blog. Let’s get right at the questions from this week.
Early AM Pre-Workout Nutrition
Many of you who workout first thing in the morning have asked what is the best pre-workout meal. Well here it is:
A combination of meat and fat, with a small amount of carbs depending on your goals.
A grass fed steak cooked in butter, handful of macadamia nuts, and a handful of berries.
-If you dont have time to cook before the morning workout, make it the night before and eat it cold pre-workout (it wont kill you) (a baggie of sliced sirloin travels very well)
-If you “can’t eat meat in the morning” I have no sympathy and you need to train yourself to gradually. Man kind was made to eat meat, look to the strongest of our species and the strongest predators of the animal kingdom. The lion on the african savannah doesn’t wake up looking for his chobani (I really hate yogurt as a dietary staple.. see last blog) he wants the meat of a conquered beast.
You have to make meat+fat a priority in the morning, there really is no compromise….
Now if you can’t eat at all pre-workout (you feel nauseous etc.)… that may not be such a bad thing. Working out fasted (if you tolerate it and it doesn’t impair performance) first thing in the morning isn’t horrible IF you had a big caloric/carb dense dinner the night before (see last blog).
In such a case a coffee/protein mix would be a great pre-workout pick me up. Try something like this all blended together:
1-2 C Black Coffee
1 Tsp Heavy Cream (YES HEAVY CREAM NOT half and half or skim milk. Coconut milk/oil is great too)
1/2 Scoop Whey
1oz mixed nuts (on the side)
This provides enough fat and protein to ensure you aren’t burning muscle tissue, and it also gives you the mental boost of caffeine (see first blog).
Game day Nutrition is very simple. You need to take in enough fuel to perform optimally but you have to be VERY sensitive to food tolerance/digestion issues. With that said here are some guidelines:
-Favor liquid nutrition (BCAAs, liquid carbs, whey, electrolytes etc.) if less than 1 hour between events
-If time allows (>90 min btwn events) small solid meals of comfortable, bland, familiar foods can be consumed with adequate electrolyte enhanced water.
-grilled chicken with rice and a small scoop of avocado, w/ colored salt.
-2 Fuel for fire packs w/ a handful of cashews
-Constantly sipping a beverage containing amino acids, high molecular weight carbs (waxy maize, cyclic dextrins), electrolytes, and creatine is a great move. (My personal favorite is a product called “plazma” from biotest, that contains all of these in one item)
You do not ever want to feel “full.” We are just trying to keep enough gas in the tank to keep you in the game.
I was asked this week to comment on a “bacon/jerky” hierarchy… Its tough to pick exact rankings but I will give you some guidelines (this goes for ALL meat, not just bacon and jerky)
-The more “wild” the better. I.e. venison, and wild bison jerky will always trump turkey or beef
-Which ever meat you have LEAST often will also always win. If you live in this country chances are you eat a ton of chicken and beef, so favoring the more exotic meats (bison, ostrich, venison, carribou, alligator, boar…) will give your body new amino acid profiles, and thus keep you from developing food allergies.
A good rule of thumb is try to rotate meats as often as possible (this goes into what i talked about in the previous entry) to get as great a variety of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) as possible.
Try this… Pick out four days of the week where you have to have 4 “whole food” (not supplement) protein meals. These meals cannot have any of the following (which happen to be very common allergens)
this means you will have to try things like….
-salmon (WILD caught!!! farm raised salmon is poison)
and any other animal that fits!
What is someone missing who doesn’t eat red meat? You mean besides the greatest most fulfilling joy in the world? here are a few:
-zinc (can be found in shellfish too though)
-many b vitamins
-purines (small protein molecules that function in many processes in the body, such as energy production, and nuerotransmitters)
^ maybe the most important and underrated
-cholesterol (my favorite nutrient)
One of the most important things that needs to be considered by those who eat only white or lean meats is that it is essential for one to take in adequate fat when consuming a high protein diet. Without enough fat (which is inherently present in most red meat) you run the risk of depleting vitamin A, and then that begins a negative spiral.
If you will never eat red meat despite my recommendation (and my recommendation is to eat red meat from animals that are either wild or have been raised properly) make sure you at least do this:
-Supplement with zinc until you pass the zinc tally test
-Eat plenty of egg yolks from free range eggs
-Cook all your white meat in butter
-Take a b12 supplement or have a doctor administer b12 injections
-Realize you are holding back your true success, and that eating red meat will make you better at everything.
The Best Bread
Bread…Sandwiches…Toast… We all miss it time to time, since we have all given up bread on our quest to be nutritionally savvy primal exercisers.
But from time to time when the urge strikes, is there a bread that is better than others?
Before I touch this topic know this, THIS ONLY APPLIES IF:
-You are already lean (i.e. you can see the outline of your abs)
-Your main goal is build muscle or improve performance
-You DONT tend to store a lot of fat on your upper back
-You handle carbs decently and don’t immediately enter a carb coma
Now with that said…here is my humble opinion.
There are two kinds of bread I deem “ok” for occasional use:
-Certain Gluten free “Rice Breads”
-Sprouted Grain Breads “Ezekiel Bread”
Even though ezekiel bread has some wheat and a small amount of gluten, most people handle it fine since the grains have been sprouted and most of the negative effects are blunted.
Rice bread is basically just rice flour and some binders, but god bless the person who can eat it regularly, it falls somewhere between dehydrated ape turds and toe jam particle board on the haggard spectrum.
Since ezekiel bread is widely tolerated, and many nutritionally anal people I know are fine with it, I give it a thumbs up in the carb category.
With those factors considered a would call it a nutrition draw for both breads but in the end my vote is for The ZEEK bread on the merits of its far better taste.
What happens if I don’t…
Eat enough essential Fat:
-Potential cardiovascular issues
-Skin issues (dry skin rashes etc.)
-Increased inflammation and joint pain
-Weakened immune system
-Nutrient mal absorption
I could go on…
……Basically a lot of horrible stuff, the same holds true for caloric intake, except now we add a slowed metabolism which means you will stop burning fat…The adage of eat less and lose more fat is way off. Instead of focusing on eating less, eat MORE quality food, recover faster and train even more!!!!
Chocolate milk as a recovery drink….
Ugh… This stupid idea just wont die. Just when people start to realize that conventional milk is poison the dairy council sponsors some hard-up PHD student to do a study telling people its better than anything else to recover. Let me save you the trouble it aint.
Chocolate milk is good as a recovery drink if you are a powerlifter that doesn’t mind being bloated and being 30% body fat. It has carbs and protein great….so do plenty of other things you won’t find me recommending post workout.
The problem here is the lactose, high fructose corn syrup, destroyed fats and enzymes, and source of the milk.
Now, if you wanted to make chocolate milk a reality as a great post workout drink try this:
-2 Cups of full fat RAW MILK
-2 Scoops of SFH chocolate protein
Boom, now there is a post workout drink that will get you stronger and wont leave you fat and cancer prone (seriously, regular milk should come with a carcinogen warning).
Melatonin, is a fairly well studied sleep aid that works on the neurotransmitters of the brain aiding in a deeper sleep. I generally don’t have a problem with it if used on occasion. I do think magnesium (my favorite is a product called “Zen Mag”) is a better choice for most people as a first step in sleep difficulties, because it works on many other pathways simultaneously, aiding in much more than sleep.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, I not trying to diagnose or treat a disease. Only sharing my civilian opinion. You can calm down now.
If I had arthritis here are some things I would do:
-Get a food sensitivity test and immediately eliminate anything that is even remotely allergenic/inflammatory (an “MRT” test)
-Take ALL the fish oil. Yep. All of it, none for any of you, sorry. And it would be High “EPA” fish oil (I like a product called Omega 3 6:1)
-Make sure I am pouring sweat before I lift ( an excessive warm up can help relieve joint pain)
-Rotate the foods I do tolerate often
-Get soft tissue work done very frequently
-Eliminate all alcohol
-Supplement with proteolytic enzymes during flare-ups
-Try topical curcumin
-Apply “emu oil” pre workout
If had arthritis I would honestly do all of that. Arthritis is a disease of inflammation, and inflammation can be controlled. Just my .02
here is one of my favorite go-to meatloaf recipes (this site has a ton of good ones!!)
Thanks for reading! Ask any follow ups below!