Monday, June 3, 2013

Paleo/Nutrition Challenge Reflections and My Last Meals

The Nutrition Challenge at my crossfit box ended last month, but they didn't announce the winners until last weekend.  Guess what? I tied for second place! Woohoo! Thank you everybody for your words of encouragement and support throughout those two months. It really was a challenge in every sense of the word. Let me take you through the last week of the challenge...
Looking for some new inspiration, we found a paleo friendly recipe in of all places, a Rachael Ray cookbook. Justin found a recipe for "Pork Chops Slathered in Mustard Butter with Bacon-Braised Napa." We didn't have any napa cabbage, or any cabbage for that matter, so we just sauteed the onions and raisins. 

It still turned out good with our improvisation!

Justin later made another version of this recipe using apples which was good as well!

As we were traveling to NYC one weekend, I found a way to eat paleo at Chik-fil-a. While I looked longingly at the spicy chicken sandwich and waffle fries, I had to settle for the grilled chicken bites and a side of fruit salad...definitely not as good :(

But for every meal that wasn't as good, there was always a delicious paleo meal around the corner. You can't go wrong with baked chicken with a side of sweet potato and greens. Tasty and nutritious!

Towards the very end of the challenge, I think Justin started getting tired of making paleo-fied versions of meals, especially if they didn't taste quite the same. He started making separate meals. Below is when he made stir-fry for dinner. The one on the left made the traditional way with soy sauce, thickened with corn starch and the one on the right made with coconut aminos, thickened with coconut flour. 

I could definitely tell that towards the end of the challenge, I was starting to lack inspiration, especially when it came to my lunches. But no harm in keeping it simple, right?

Anyways, let me share with you some of my results from the challenge! I lost 10 lbs over the two month period.  I also lost nearly 7 inches, but the more amazing thing is how much stronger I got! Sorry, but I'm not brave enough to post my before/after pictures. Maybe I'll share them after I've lost more weight? ;) 

Here are my weights/reps from when I first started the challenge...

And here are my results after I completed the challenge...

This chart's notes compared the improvement in weight/reps from when I first started to the end. One thing's for sure, when it comes to running, I'm still a pretty slow ;)

Overall, I would say that participating in this challenge was a huge learning experience. One that I'm really glad I took part in. 

Winners, winners, (unbreaded) Chicken Dinners!

Photo Courtesy of CF Rubicon

Some final thoughts...

Do I currently eat paleo now? Honestly, I don't but I try to adhere to eating clean (whole foods, no chemicals) overall, and mostly choose protein/veggies over carbs when eating.

Would I do a challenge like this again? Possibly, if I need a reset my diet.  It would be similar to how someone would do a fast or a cleanse.

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