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A Common Misconception: You Have to Eat Paleo to do CrossFit
By Ben Smith
There’s a common question (and misconception) out there that we hear quite frequently, “Do I have to eat Paleo to do CrossFit?”. While there are some gyms out there, CrossFit and not, that put a lot of pressure on people to eat a Paleo diet, that’s not a core belief of ours at Top Tier. In fact, it kinda perturbs us. : )
For those of you that are unfamiliar with the Paleo diet, it’s essentially centered around eating as our ancestors would have, before agriculture. For the most part, it’s a hunter-gatherer diet that includes meat and fish, vegetables, nuts, seeds, certain fruits and some forms of potatoes. We’re firm believers in doing what is right for the individual based on their goals, finances and schedule. Eating a clean diet that consists of lean protein, vegetables, and healthy fats, while limiting processed sugar and carbs, will definitely get you where you need to be. It’s not rocket science and it’s pretty basic nutrition.
While we find it tacky to bash a particular form of exercise or diet trend, you can get a good feel for the deprivation, stress, and emotional roller coaster people go through just based on the sheer volume of Pinterest boards, websites and online communities specifically dedicated to “Paleo Cheat Days” or “Paleo Hacks” or trying to make your favorite meal “Paleo-friendly”. It’s simply not worth it (in our opinion). And it’s just that, our opinion, so we encourage everyone to do their research and figure out what works best for you.
So if it wasn’t clear, the simple answer to that common question? No, you do NOT have to eat Paleo to do CrossFit!