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Old 06-11-2008, 06:33 PM   #1
Tres O Johnson
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Critique my zone diet please

I've been Crossfitting and Zoning for over two months now. When I started I weighed in at a hefty 230#. I'm now down do a slim, svelte 213# . Anyway, the last two days I've been bonking on the workouts. I mean mentally and physically bonking hard. It can't be the sleep, I get 7 - 8 hours easy so I'm thinking perhaps the way I'm eating is the problem.

So here I am asking you guys and gals to critique my diet. Here are the particulars:
  • I am 30 years old and 5'7.75" (usually just call it 5'7") and was 230# when I started and used an online calculator to determine that i needed to eat 15 blocks (4-1-4-1-4-1) (the calculator did account for activity, which I think was a .7 multiplier)
  • I am now down to 213# (possibly as low as 210#) and have not re-adjusted my blocks
  • I am eating 40-30-30 but my fitday totals don't always accurately reflect that.
  • I am only doing the mainsite WoDs (scaled in some cases)
  • My CFT has increased by 80#, 1 mile run time has decreased from 16 minutes to just over 8 minutes (cut me a break, I've never been a runner )

And now without further ado my FitDay Food Journal

If you'd like to take a look at my pitiful (for now) workout results you can take a look at the link to my CrossFit Workout journal in my sig.

Thanks in advance ladies and gentlemen!
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Old 06-11-2008, 07:27 PM   #2
Jack Gayton
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Are you sure you understand the zone diet?

1 block carbs = 9 grams
1 block protein = 7 grams
1 block fat = 3 grams

You say you're on a 15 block program, but the math doesn't compute. I generally eat 16 blocks a day. Usually looks something like

140 grams carbs
120 grams protein
100 grams fat

I don't measure out fat, just try to be reasonable.

I think you're eating way too much carbs and not enough fat personally. Today you had 219 grams which would be 24.3 blocks. Could be why you're "bonking".



Cut down on carbs and up the fat intake slightly.
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Old 06-11-2008, 07:37 PM   #3
Jack Gayton
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

I should have also added "congrats" to my post above. You're making solid progress. Just keep at it!!
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Old 06-12-2008, 02:12 AM   #4
Tres O Johnson
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Hey Jack, thanks for replying man.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
Are you sure you understand the zone diet?

1 block carbs = 9 grams
1 block protein = 7 grams
1 block fat = 3 grams
I've been using the book "Mastering the Zone" and the blocks of fat (at least in the book) are supposed to be 1.5. Did I miss something? I thought Dr. Sears assumes that the other fats come from my protein sources.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
You say you're on a 15 block program, but the math doesn't compute. I generally eat 16 blocks a day. Usually looks something like

140 grams carbs
120 grams protein
100 grams fat

I don't measure out fat, just try to be reasonable.
When I'm calculating carbs I subtract the fiber as instructed in the book, is this wrong? I have to admit that I am inconsistent though in that I sometimes use the generic fitday food type instead of entering a custom food. For instance, you'll see that I ate canned peaches yesterday and it's the generic fitday entry (which actually has a couple more carbs than the actual label) I call it "close enough" though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
I think you're eating way too much carbs and not enough fat personally. Today you had 219 grams which would be 24.3 blocks. Could be why you're "bonking".



Cut down on carbs and up the fat intake slightly.
Can you go into more detail here? Should I not be subtracting fiber from the carbs to get an accurate block count?

Any other observations from other CrossFitters? All replies/critiques are welcome!
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Old 06-12-2008, 03:52 AM   #5
Jack Gayton
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Tres - You're right. Fat is 1.5, but there is an assumption that there is also 1.5 grams coming from your protein source, which would get you to the 3 grams. I'd pull my hair out trying to calculate fat completely on it's own. I always just account for my fat (say olive oil) and the fat in the meat source.

I think most people doing CF and Zone go over on fat. Up to 5X. If I ate 16 blocks of fat, I'd never leave the couch, let alone knock out a WOD. I'm usually around 2X or 3X. I think the fact that you're crashing is a good sign you're not getting enough fat.

I have to admit, I wasn't aware of subtracting out fiber. I didn't catch that when I read Dr. Sears. However, I read the Omega RX Zone. Hopefully, someone else can chime in here. I'd err on the side of caution in regards to the carbs. It seems way high personally.

Also, watch your carb sources. You mentioned canned peaches. I would guess they are loaded w/ sugar in the syrup which would defeat the point of eating fruit, no? And if you really want to see results, you should try to be accurate in your log, at least for a few weeks. Makes a difference.

A lot of experts here. I'm sure you'll get plenty of good advice today. I'm a little pressed for time, but I'll check back in later. Good luck!
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Old 06-12-2008, 04:30 AM   #6
Tres O Johnson
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
I think most people doing CF and Zone go over on fat. Up to 5X. If I ate 16 blocks of fat, I'd never leave the couch, let alone knock out a WOD. I'm usually around 2X or 3X. I think the fact that you're crashing is a good sign you're not getting enough fat.
As far as fat blocks and multipliers, from what I've read most CrossFitters who increase their fat blocks by 2x, 3x and so on are at or close to advanced/elite level and are generally happy with their body composition. I am a beginner still (after two months) and and definitely not happy with my body composition. Even if my bf% is still relatively high (<= 25% now I'm estimating, of course) should I be increasing my fat blocks? I'm still getting stronger, my metcon is just really tough to get through lately. Am I wrong though? Should I increase it despite having a high bf% and only being a novice CrossFitter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
I have to admit, I wasn't aware of subtracting out fiber. I didn't catch that when I read Dr. Sears. However, I read the Omega RX Zone. Hopefully, someone else can chime in here. I'd err on the side of caution in regards to the carbs. It seems way high personally.
Haven't read that one, perhaps someone could back me up or let me know if I'm wrong here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
Also, watch your carb sources. You mentioned canned peaches. I would guess they are loaded w/ sugar in the syrup which would defeat the point of eating fruit, no? And if you really want to see results, you should try to be accurate in your log, at least for a few weeks. Makes a difference.
The peaches, while not ideal, were in a light syrup with no added sugar only splenda (packaged that way). While not ideal (and I know you guys have varying opinions on splenda) I was under the impression that it was pretty much okay. I guess if I have a label available I should enter it as a custom food though, huh? I'll do that from now on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Gayton View Post
A lot of experts here. I'm sure you'll get plenty of good advice today. I'm a little pressed for time, but I'll check back in later. Good luck!
Thanks, please do. I'm always eager to learn something new.

Cheers
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:00 AM   #7
Jack Gayton
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Tres, Seems like you're fairly well informed. I'm not sure what the answer is on the fat blocks. In my own personal experience, I don't think I ever truly counted the fat blocks and I always just wound up around 2X or 3X. I still have lost quite a bit of fat in the past year and improved strength.

I believe what coach, and others stated, is to follow the zone as rx'd until you reach a desired BF % level and then increase fat blocks. I just could never get through the day on 48 grams of fat total.

Personally, I think you would be much better served to cut down on your carb intake to 135 grams or so regardless of fiber. Focus on veggies, fruit (real fruit - not canned) maybe a little starch and no sugar.

Anyway, as I mentioned at the start of my reply, you are well-informed. I think some of the gurus should chime in at this point.

Gant.. Stephen..Jay.. Elliot - Got any words of wisdom?
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:25 AM   #8
Tres O Johnson
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Jack, thanks for all your replies man. This is one of the great things about this board. People taking the time out to help out a complete and total stranger! I love it.

Keep the suggestions/critiques coming. They are all very much appreciated.
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:43 AM   #9
Laura Kurth
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

in terms of zone percentages etc. I think your fitday looks pretty solid. However I have the following suggestions:

1. eat more meat : you appear to eat very little meat

2. eat less dairy

3. consider not eating those veggie sausage patties for breakfast, I assume they are made of soy

4. eat less fruit and more vegetables

5. eat more fat

I personally think that if you are going to do the 'zone' strictly in terms of the 1.5g fat per block, you should choose higher fat protein sources like red meat, whole eggs, and full fat dairy.

It isn't very healthy for a man your size to be eating 50-60g fat per day IMO.

congrats of losing the weight so far, overall your diet is pretty good so keep up the good work!
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:53 AM   #10
Tres O Johnson
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Re: Critique my zone diet please

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura Kurth View Post
in terms of zone percentages etc. I think your fitday looks pretty solid. However I have the following suggestions:

1. eat more meat : you appear to eat very little meat
Okay. So for breakfast what would you suggest? I've looked at Jay Cohen's log and see that he's had ground pork for breakfast. Is that okay for a guy as "overfat" as I am? I'm sure he's much leaner than I am so I assumed it'd be more okay with a guy like him. I mean in "Mastering the Zone" things like that are listed as unfavorable. Should I just ignore some of those "rules"?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura Kurth View Post
2. eat less dairy
The lowfat cottage cheese it too much? How about beef/turkey jerky? Deli meats from a real deli? Is that cool?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura Kurth View Post
3. consider not eating those veggie sausage patties for breakfast, I assume they are made of soy
Gotcha. Should I just eat whole eggs instead or get some real meat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura Kurth View Post
4. eat less fruit and more vegetables
I've been eating the fruit because it's more cost effective and easier to transport. As far as my carb sources I unfortunately depend on a lot of beans (black/kidney, sometimes lentils) to fill in my carb blocks. Is this okay? I ate a whole head of romaine for dinner this past weekend with a whole cucumber and tomato and good Lord I was full and still had to eat some cantaloupe to get all my blocks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura Kurth View Post
5. eat more fat
Will do. Prior to zoning I was eating 40-30-30 (protein-carbs-fats) and eating around 2500 calories. I very much enjoyed my natural peanut butter and almonds and miss eating them in the quantity that I did.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laura Kurth View Post
I personally think that if you are going to do the 'zone' strictly in terms of the 1.5g fat per block, you should choose higher fat protein sources like red meat, whole eggs, and full fat dairy.

It isn't very healthy for a man your size to be eating 50-60g fat per day IMO.

congrats of losing the weight so far, overall your diet is pretty good so keep up the good work!
Thanks Laura!

Any other suggestions? I'm surprised Jay hasn't come in to offer some opinions (hint, hint, paging Jay Cohen).
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