Every January at ICA, we embark on a nutrition challenge. The specifics vary year-to-year, but the goal is always the same: to get back to healthy habits following the craziness of the holiday season! This year, we’re doing a 28 day sugar and alcohol detox. Interested in joining us? Read on for details!
Why a sugar & alcohol detox? Have you ever noticed that the more sugar you eat, the more you crave? Science backs up this sugar-craving cycle, with studies showing that we can become biologically addicted to sugar, just as we would other substances like drugs or alcohol. The recommended added sugar consumption is no more than 25 grams/day, but the average American consumes around 71 grams. Excess sugar consumption contributes to a host of medical conditions including heart disease, cancer, dementia, type-2 diabetes, depression, and the list goes on. It’s scary stuff.
Alcohol is another substance can hijack our bodies and minds, adding unnecessary calories to our diets, causing us to feel tired and bloated, and leading us to make poor food choices. By challenging ourselves to no sweets and no alcohol for 28 days, we’ll reset our bodies and start the year off right!
By the end of the 4 weeks you’ll feel leaner and less bloated. You’ll sleep better at night and have better energy during the day. All this, just in time for the 2023 CrossFit Open – starting Feb 16!
When is the challenge? The challenge will run for 28 days, from Monday January 23 through Monday February 23.
What are the rules? There are only 2 rules: no sweets and no alcohol! By no sweets, we mean traditional sweets like cookies, ice cream, cake, donuts, muffins, and sugary beverages (soda, energy drinks, gatorade, coffee with sugar or sweetened creamers, etc). If you already eat a fairly low sugar diet, take it a step further and cut out any food with more than 5g added sugar. This will eliminate a lot of cereals, granola bars, and other packaged goods. It will be important to read the labels of anything you eat. (Better yet – eat whole foods that don’t come in packages and don’t have labels!)
How do I sign up? Sign up by commenting on this blog post! We want to know who is participating so we can check in occasionally and give each other support. Additionally, we encourage you to join the ICA Members Community and the ICA Nutrition Club on Facebook where we can support each other, ask questions, and help each other stay on track!
Before-and-After Comparison. To get the most of the challenge, it’s important to have before-and-after data:
- On the morning of January 23, record your weight and the circumference of your waist and hips.
- Take 3 photos of yourself – from the front, the back, and the side. Wear tight fitting clothing like a swimsuit or underwear. You don’t have to share the photos, but keep them for yourself to look back on!
- You can take it a step further by signing up for an InBody scan – we offer 2 scans for $50 during any ICA nutrition challenge. (Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a time!)
Additionally, we’ll run a Nutrition Challenge Performance Test during all classes on Jan 23, and we’ll repeat the same WOD on Feb 23, so you can have a before-and-after performance comparison. After all, as CrossFitters, we know that the ultimate test of health and fitness is how we perform, not the number on the scale!
What are some recommended foods/meals?
Breakfast: Eggs (either scrambled or in an omelet) with berries, a piece of fruit or a side of unflavored oatmeal. Another option is cottage cheese or plain greek yogurt mixed with berries, nuts, and seeds.
Lunch: A salad with chicken breast and a variety of veggies and healthy fats. Watch out for salad dressings – most have lots of added sugar! If you need additional carbohydrates, add root vegetables or a gluten free grain like quinoa, farro or rice.
Dinner: Roasted vegetables with wild salmon, and brown rice.
Snacks: Tuna packets, protein shakes, fresh fruit, baby carrots, greek yogurt or cottage cheese, nuts.
Before bed treat: Greek yogurt, decaffinated tea, fresh berries.
Let’s get after it, ICA!