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Old 01-09-2007, 07:04 PM   #1
Michael Tong
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I started CrossFit in July 2006 and have seen some nice gains. My diet is what I would call a pseudo-zone diet; which is to say, I watch what I eat and eye-ball my mix of protein, carbs and fat. I know by no means is my eye-balling accurate. I have zero craving for sweets, alcohol and soda, so the bulk of my diet is clean calories.

My problem is that I've never been a calorie counter and most-likely never will be. It is excrutiatingly painful to me. I just like to eat, and that's it. So, counting blocks for me would be just as troublesome.

Another problem is that I am Asian and it is hard for me to give up rice. I know this is not Zone-appropriate but it is my reality.

So, does anyone have easy-to-follow menu advice if I don't want to count blocks? If I don't want to give up rice?

For reference, I am 38, 5' 7", 182 lbs, estimating body fat at 17% (this estimate is just from experience with past measurements, but I need to get this measured again soon), 34" waist, 42 - 44" chest.

I have a small gut, and small love handles, which I want to get rid of. My chest, shoulders, arms and lats are decently developed.

Short-term goal is to continue to gain fitness/strength goals and drop body fat so that I have some abs definition (don't need to be ripped, but definitely would like to see at least faint outlines of a six-pack). Longer term goal is to achieve and maintain 9 - 11% range body fat, and get close to 200 lb body weight of muscle (I know this sounds like a lot for someone only 5' 7" but I was close to this about 10 years ago, and I have a lot more muscle growth I can achieve in my legs - I am definitely stockier at the chest and shoulders, and unbalanced in the quads). If I achieve this, my guess is my waist size would be 32", which I haven't been for over 10 years or more.

So, am I SOL if I don't start counting blocks? Or is there a glimmer of hope? I am hoping that this great resourceful CrossFit community can show me the light.

I just bought a Concept 2 rower and have been hitting that just about every day in addition to my WODs. I even row on rest days sometimes. I guess I can continue to increase the intensity of my C2 workouts and see how this affects my body composition. Anyone have other metcon advice?

Sorry for the long post.
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Old 01-10-2007, 04:50 AM   #2
Sean Harrison
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You could try brown rice for a while then see if you can kick that.
We all have our things that can raise our blood sugar but that we should omit. If I kicked the potatoes, you could kick the rice ( which I kicked too...even though I live in Taiwan now!)
I also don't count calories, but the truth is I looked my best (3 years ago I was down to 200lbs...now I'm 230) when I was very careful about how I ate.
It's a game of percentages. Eat right 95% of the time=look really really good, 90%=good 80%= Ok...but that's for me.
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Old 01-10-2007, 07:30 AM   #3
Eva Claire Synkowski
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if getting rid of rice is not going to happen, i would actually just measure a "zone" portion once or twice. i wouldn't be surprised if your rice portion is much greater than what zone prescribes. this may help you eyeball a little more accurately. and perhaps you could limit rice to either lunch/dinner (not both)?

others have said this elsewhere, but you can drop some body fat with some intervals on the C2. so instead of rowing say for 20 min daily - try 500m, 250m, whatever-you-can-do-with-high-intensity m, repeats for 15 min or so.
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Old 01-10-2007, 10:22 AM   #4
Michael Tong
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Thanks for the replies. I got an idea from someone else posting that he was doing 500m x 6, with a 3 minute rest in between. I thought that was a nice program so I am going to start that. I'll do it for total time and hope to see decreasing times for the entire set.

If that doesn't start produce the results I want, then I guess the decision is easy... either I need to count blocks/cut out the rice or I don't want to lose body fat. Everything costs something in this world; we just need to determine if we want it enough and if we are willing to pay the price.
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Old 01-10-2007, 12:55 PM   #5
Steve Liberati
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In my opinion, calorie counting turns following a healthy lifestyle into a chore. No room for it.

I'd drop the rice if you can...or limit it to post-workout only.

As an italian-american, it was hard giving up pasta before converting over to a strict paleo diet. An african american friend of mine had the same problem with bread. He gave it up though and never looked back.

If we can do, so can you!
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Old 01-10-2007, 09:49 PM   #6
Michael Tong
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Well, after pondering my post and the replies, I decided to read a lot more on this forum on nutrition today. Boy, was I wrong to call my diet "pseudo-zone". I wasn't even close.

I decided to count the calories/blocks for a few of my meals today (just to get a bench-mark), and the conclusion is that I am no where near a zone-like diet. I think I was delusional to think that I was. Four ounces of sirloin or chicken breast is so small. I was probably eating 2, maybe 3 times that in one sitting before. I think I have a decent metabolism, and it seems regardless of what I eat, I stay in similar shape (which is to say, decent muscle development with a nice layer over top to hide the definition) and weight (+ or - 4lbs or so).

The good news in all of this is that I now know that I was way over-eating rice - probably 1.5 cups cooked, for about 3 meals a day and sometimes more, plus good carbs like a cup of brocolli and then maybe a 1/2 cup of strawberries to wash it down.

I am going to kick the rice cold-turkey (your replies gave me the motivation) for a month to see what happens, and also continue bench-marking my meals so I am much closer to The Zone. If I like the result, I may add rice back in for PWO (as Steve suggested) or with a small cheat meal, but it will only be used for incentive/reward (if I will even crave it after the cold-turkey month).

Thanks for this great community. I found some nice recipes that are easy and tasty, and it will definitely help me towards my goals.

Back to the drawing board on my diet planning...

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