How freakin’ great is it when people exceed your expectations of them?!
I’ve been working with Melissa Urban as my nutrition coach since last July, and the way she’s helped me learn to eat and re-shaped the way I think about food is nothing short of miraculous. Before this weekend, we’d only talked in email, where she proved herself to be patient, intelligent, sassy, supportive, and no-nonsense.
In person, she was all that, plus kind, funny, beautiful, warm, and just generally lovely. Dallas, I should add, is no slouch in the charm, brains, and motivation department. To sum: they’re superheroes.
I attended their Whole9 Nutriton Workshop today at CrossFit Austin, and I’m urging you: if you are anywhere near one of the Whole9 workshops this summer, get yourself there. Do it! (Their workshop schedule is in the right sidebar of their web site.)
I gave up grains in 2008 (Goodbye, toast! I only kinda miss you.), and last summer, Melissa gave me plenty of reasons to remove dairy from my diet – despite the fact that cheese is delightful and a bowl of cereal with milk was my favorite ‘I don’t feel like cooking’ meal replacement.
Going into the workshop today, I expected to be familiar with most of the material. But even though I have unlimited access to Melissa and Dallas – and I listen to Robb Wolf’s podcasts – I learned a lot of new stuff and found new motivation. How brilliant is that?!
Stuff I’m thinking about after listening to Melissa and Dallas, in no particular order:
I haven’t had dairy in, like, forever, and I’m keeping it that way. Dallas’s rant on how ‘weird’ it is to drink cow’s milk, coupled with the science behind the pronouncement, is enough to make me love cheese, yogurt, and milk only from afar.
Dig this: ‘Bad’ food we eat causes inflammation and harmful insulin reactions. That’s not surprising. BUT bad food also prevents us from taking advantage of the Good food we eat. Grains, dairy, legumes, and sugar actually hinder our access to the energy and nutrients in protein, fat, fruits, and vegetables.
The Whole9 recommends a 30-day no-cheat approach to dietary change because it takes that long (or longer) to rid the body of inflammation caused by years of poor food choices. Melissa’s words, “By eating high-quality food, you can heal your body.” I need some major healing action right now, so I’m starting the Whole30 tomorrow… not because I want to be ‘skinny’ or because I want to prove I’m hardcore, but because now that my Synthroid dose is sorted out, I can finally, fully heal myself, from the inside out.
I generally don’t eat before my workouts because I train so early (5:45 a.m.!). On weekends when I train later in the morning, I sometimes eat half a Larabar so I don’t bonk during the WOD. Turns out, that’s pretty much all wrong. Carbohydrates just before a workout are counter to the desired energy effect. Instead, Dallas recommended a small-ish protein snack to effectively open up the floodgates to release the energy stored in our bodies – and then post-workout, refuel with dense, nutritious carbohydrates (sweet potatoes, beets, or butternut squash, for example) partnered with lean protein and no added fat to reload the glycogen stores in the muscles.
So I have some neato new stuff to try… and these are just a few select lessons I learned. The workshop is a solid, 4-hour primer on how to take care of yourself. Seriously. Go if you can.
And if you’re even considering making the switch to a cleaner, performance- and health-focused diet, give the Whole30 a try. It’s one month dedicated to seeing how great you can feel. Don’tcha deserve that?!
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