Most of you have had by now an introduction to the Paleo and Zone diet concepts we promote here at CrossFit Orlando. Maybe you’re already on board, maybe you’ve let a few things slide over the holidays, or maybe you just need a little extra motivation to get started. So, without further ado, we present:

CrossFit Orlando’s New Year Paleo/Zone Challenge

Paleo: The Paleo Diet is primarily based on food quality, with the premise that we evolved eating a certain way. Our bodies were not designed to function well on the modern American diet of high carbohydrate, highly processed foods. The healthiest foods for us are unprocessed lean meats, seafood, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. Eating this way will get most people lean, healthy, and at much lower risk for a host of modern diseases.

The Zone: The Zone Diet is more about quantity of food, but still with an emphasis on paleo-like food quality. It provides a convenient way to weigh and measure food intake to keep hormonally balanced levels of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. It works extremely well to tweak a good quality diet toward faster weight loss, muscle gain, or better performance. If you aren’t weighing and measuring to an extent, it’s akin to doing a workout without a stopwatch. Hard to measure results if there are no input numbers to compare.

Paleo/Zone: While either diet can be used alone with good results, the best results come from a combination of both. Weighing and Measuring your Paleo foods lets us tweak the diet to get optimal results. Often it works well to combine both for a couple of months, to get a good grasp of required quantity of food, then go back to less strictly measured Paleo but with simple eyeballing of quantity. It becomes more of a lifestyle at this point than a “diet”.

The Challenge:

8 weeks of strict Paleo/Zone. We’ll start you on a block prescription, and adjust it if needed throughout the challenge. You must keep a Food Log. This can be either online at a choice of websites we’ll recommend, or in a notebook of your own. Most improved at the end of the challenge wins.

Rules: The challenge will start Jan. 4th and end March 1st. Those who wish to participate will “buy in” with $20. Everyone will weigh in on our office scale and have a “before” photo taken (as little clothes as you – and us – are comfortable with).

One part of the challenge will be the body composition change, and another part will be fitness improvement. We’ll be comparing times from some different workouts early in the challenge we will repeat again at the end of the 8 weeks (not telling which).

At the end of the challenge, we’ll take an “after” picture, and all members will vote on the most improved body composition. The workout improvement will be averaged in for a final winner.

Winner: Everyone who sticks to the diet challenge and trains hard is a winner. You’ll see marked improvement in energy levels, strength, and overall fitness. Voting will be private but overall results will be posted. The most improved gets the pot from all the $20 buy-ins, as well as a free month of unlimited training, and a CrossFit Orlando T-Shirt.