Track System

Does the way you workout and train each day you’re in the gym reflect what your goals are?

With the new Track System, the goal is for you to be able to train in a way that more easily reflects your goals and your “why” for working out. Each day all three tracks (Sweat, Train, Compete) will follow the same workout, only on some of the days there will be some slight changes. Sweat will have some lighter weights and kipping movements. Train will have some heavier weights with a focus on strict movements. Compete will have the same heavier weights as train, but will also include higher skill gymnastics movements for those who want to do competitions. Sound simple right? Well, lets talk more in depth about the differences.


Sweat, as stated above, is going to have lighter weights and kipping movements. The goal here is to increase maximal power, AKA, work. With lighter weights and kipping movements, the hope is to be able to move as much as possible during each workout with less time spent resting, therefor getting the absolute most amount of time spent moving as possible. What happens when you move for longer? Your work capacity increases, conditioning increases, and best of all, if you can only workout a few days a week, its the best bang for your buck. Sweat is perfect for those who just want to get a great workout, sweat a lot, increase their fitness and functionality, build some muscle, increase their conditioning, and are not worried about high skill gymnastics movements.


Train has more of a focus on strength. Train will have heavier weights than sweat, but with greatly reduced kipping movements. The reason for this is that the goal with Train is to increase strength with both external objects and bodyweight. This track is perfect for those using CrossFit as a means of training for something outside of the gym, such as a sport or job (football, softball, rugby, LEO, military, etc.), or even someone more concerned about getting strong. This can almost be thought of as a strength and conditioning style focus.


Compete is fairly straight forward. This track will have the same weights as Train, but will also include high skill gymnastics rather than strict movements. With an emphasis on the higher skill gymnastics come a slightly increased injury risk, however the trade off is increased ability to perform in competitions/the CrossFit Open. This track is for those who want to compete, or even those who just want to work on those higher skills in a MetCon. Now, an important thing to make a note of, Compete is not necessarily going to teach you how to get your first muscle up or handstand push up, or any other high skill gymnastics movement. Instead, it will make you more capable of doing them at higher volume in MetCons.


At the end of the day, some movement is better than no movements, however, what is suggested to do is figure out what your goal is and then follow the track every day accordingly. For example, if your goal fits the Sweat track the best, then you follow Sweat every day rather than switching around. Every tack is still able to be modified and tapered to each individual every day, but being consistent with one track at a time is going to help you achieve your goals the most efficiently.


Lets get an example of a workout that would have three different variations for each of the tracks, shall we?



Ring Muscle Ups

Squat Snatches (135/95)

SWEAT: Lets change it to 15-12-9 reps, but do Burpee Kipping Pull Ups and (95/65) for the Squat Snatches. Lighter weight, simplified gymnastics, increased volume, however it should be able to be completed in the same time domain, but with less rest.

TRAIN: Keep 9-7-5, keep (135/96), but do Burpee Strict Pull Ups, or even Strict Chest To Bar Pull Ups.

COMPETE: Exactly as written.


The athlete who is less worried about strength and just wants killer workout will complete the Sweat version. Tom Brady needs strength, but shouldn’t risk messing up his shoulder with kipping, so he does the Train version. Rich Froning competes, so obviously he does the compete version. All athletes finish within the same time frame, but follow the workout as it best suits their goal.

What is your goal? What is your track? Stick with it, be consistent, crush your workouts, and smash your goals.

Week In Preview, Nov. 1st, 2021

“Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you respond to it.”

– Lou Holtz


Thought of the Week:

There are three main reason one chooses to do CrossFit:
  1. They want to sweat, burn some calories, feel good, and have a good time.
  2. They want to push the envelope a bit, using CrossFit as a means of training for what they do outside of the gym such as a sport, hiking, first responder, military, etc.
  3. They want to compete in CrossFit, treating it as their sport.

What are you here to do? What is your main goal?  Does your workout intention every day reflect your main goal?

Weekly WODs: 


Crossfit  – International Chest Day.
Bench Press deload day! 7-5-3 reps, nothing crazy, prepping to hit that 3RM next week. Our MetCon will have Rowing, Tuck Ups, and Burpees.
Burn – 

AMRAP x 10:00


Sit Ups


Slam Balls/Plate Ground to Overhead


10m Shuttle Run


Crossfit  –  Squat Day.
Deloading our Back Squats today with reps of 7-5-3, getting us ready to squat a house next week. The MetCon will have Single Dumbbell Front Squats coupled with Up Downs Over the Dumbbell, its going to be a fast burner!

Every 2:00 x 4 Sets

200m Run

Immediately Into Max Reps of –

Set 1: Dumbbell Strict Press

Set 2: Dumbbell Burpees

Set 3: Dumbbell Front Squats

Set 4: Devils Press

1:00 Rest Between Sets


Crossfit – Push Jerks.
Deloading our Shoulder to Overhead today. The MetCon is simple, yet effective: running and more push jerks!

5 Rounds For Time

20 Alternating Lunges

15 Ring Rows

10 Calorie Bike/Row

12:00 Cap


Crossfit – Aerobic Capacity Day
MetCon today will have Rowing, Wall Sits, and some special skill work: Hand Stand Walking! And of course, we will have scaling options available to get everyone doing something upside down today. Following the MetCon we will have some Body Armor: Banded PVC Lat Pull Downs, Banded Overhead Tricep Extensions, and Curls.

For Time

500m Row

Rest 1:00

EMOM x 6:00

MIN 1: 6 Push Ups + 15 Sit Ups

MIN 2: 6 Burpees + 20 Kettlebell Sumo Deadlift High Pull

Rest 1:00

AMRAP x 2:00

Max Effort Row For Meters


Crossfit  – “THE INFERNO”
Today begins with some Sumo Deadlift waves for strength. Following the Sumo Deadlift, we have benchmark workout “THE INFERNO”, which consists of: Double Unders, Air Squats, and regular conventional Deadlifts.

AMRAP x 12:00

12 Alternating Kettlebell Push Press

100m Run

12 Alternating Kettlebell Suitcase Step Ups


Crossfit – Partner Workout Saturday (8AM); “ROCKY HORROR” (10:15AM, Level 2)
We will begin with a strength piece for both classes today which is building in weight for a complex of hang power cleans plus a hang squat clean. The 8AM class has a partner MetCon of Box Jumps, Dumbbell Thrusters, Dumbbell Snatches, and Pull Ups. The Level 2 class will also have the same strength piece followed by “ROCKY HORROR”, a MetCon with the same movements as the 8AM class, just with less volume as it is not a partner version. Level 2 will then finish the day with some Pistol Squat skill work.

In Teams of 2

AMRAP x 14:00

60 Calorie Bike

60 Russian Kettlebell Swings

60 Wall Balls

Conquering Covid

Facemasks have become the new normal, but are you doing everything you can to stay healthy? With the world opening back up, anxiety about what you can do to help protect yourself and family from contracting the novel SARS-CoV-2 virus is high. Exercising, getting extra sleep, and prioritizing your protein will help keep your immune system operating at peak performance.

A recent discovery made it clear that supplementing Vitamin D could help stave off this unwanted virus. Vitamin D is a steroid hormone that your body needs to function optimally. It’s generated in skin by UVB rays that come from the sun hitting your skin but it’s hard to get enough by just lounging in the sun. Vitamin D has many other important functions, but in this case the immune boost and reaction to Covid-19 are our main concern.

Here’s an excerpt from the renowned Dr. Rhonda Patrick who is involved in the research during this pandemic:

“Since vitamin D insufficiency is widespread (and perhaps exacerbated in quarantine conditions, due to limited sunlight exposure), supplemental vitamin D might be a viable means to increase vitamin D to sufficient levels.
Maintaining a healthy vitamin D status, an imminently solvable but often ignored problem, may turn out to be an important factor in protecting against susceptibility to lung injury in COVID-19.” (FoundMyFitness, Dr. Rhonda Patrick

Most people have insufficient levels because we wear clothes, work inside all day and wear sunscreen to protect our skin. This will block your absorption of UVB rays making you susceptible to Vitamin D insufficiency. In fact, 70% of people in the US have this insufficiency, and 29% of the US are actually deficient. Not to mention if you live in the Northern latitude states, above the 37th parallel, or have dark skin, the risk of deficiency increases causing a myriad of other health issues aside from immune function.

So what can you do? Daily supplements of Vitamin D for you and your family have been shown to greatly reduce the risk for acute respiratory tract infections.

If increasing your immune defense system doesn’t turn you on, did you know that Vitamin D wards off depression? Depression rates have increased an astounding 65% since the beginning of the pandemic. With most of us quarantining and forced to stay inside, I’m sure you can see how easily this can happen. If you’re not into supplements, think about adding salmon in your diet a few times a week, a food extremely rich in Vitamin D. Stay healthy and happy, folks!

If you are a CFK athlete, ask a coach about our D3 from Puori!  It’s a very inexpensive way to offer yourself better protection!

Coach Alex

Your Health, COVID-19, and What We’re Doing

Hi CFK Fam!

In light of recent concerns, we want to share an update on our plans to keep the gym the healthy space you all love.

As you already know, exercise is one of the best ways to keep your immune system strong. Paired with healthy nutritional habits and smart supplementation, regular exercise will help strengthen your resistance to illness of all kind, short and long term. So while the concern over spread of COVID-19 is real and should be taken seriously, please use this as an opportunity to assess your healthy habits across the board.

Yes, we want to wash our hands regularly and do things to mitigate the spread of germs. More importantly, we want to make sure we’re regularly active and eating a wide variety of whole foods, especially colorful veggies, while limiting our inflammatory foods such as sugars & alcohols and many artificial ingredients.

The habits you’ve been practicing over time and continue to practice now will have as high an impact on the state of your health and resistance to disease as the hygienic practices you implement now. Both are important, and should be evaluated.

Here are a few things we’re doing to maintain a clean environment, as well as a few things you can do while you’re in class to help out.

What we’re doing:
  1. CFK has always placed the highest priority on sanitation and cleanliness. Our owner and founder Johnny owned a cleaning company prior to finding CrossFit, and we’ve maintained a top-down approach to cleaning the gym since the beginning. All floors and touched surfaces get cleaned and disinfected daily, as well as a rotating schedule assuring that all equipment gets disinfected on a regular basis.
  2. We’re adding a disinfecting protocol with our coaches that assures all door handles, bathrooms, commonly touched surfaces get disinfected after each “block” of classes.
  3. The blue gymnastics mats get professionally cleaned regularly, and we’re scheduling extra cleanings on them currently. We will also be using disinfecting spray on these daily.
What you can do:
  1. Please wash your hands before and after each class, and give elbows instead of high fives.
  2. Pump-in and Pump out! We have hand sanitizers around the gym, please use a pump on your way in and on your way out each class.
  3. We have disinfecting wipes in each bathroom and buckets on the gym floor. Please take 1 wipe and wipe down your touched surfaces after class. Please be conservative as these have become harder to source. There is no need for more than 1, as the goal is to simply spread the liquid around to let the disinfecting agent do it’s job. One single wipe when used properly can disinfect a kettlebell, barbell, abmat and wall ball before needing another one, so please use wisely and share when appropriate.
  4. If you’re sick, please stay home, as you’ll heal faster that way. Get out for a walk and leave the intense exercise for when you’re healthy. The same goes for your kiddos. We love them, but please keep them home if they are not well.


If you have any questions or concerns at all, please reach out to me directly at 865-356-9000 or email me HERE.


Eat well, stay active, stay healthy, and we’ll see you out there!


-Coach Rick

I AM CFK Winter 2020 – Healthy Habits = Healthy You!

What’s up CFK?  The new year is hear and we’re like: “It’s time to turn up the heat, get really strict, workout 3 x’s a day, and finally make those Gainz we’ve been threatening to make for a while now.”  Stop right there Tiger!

It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been training or how many times you’ve failed a diet/training program in the past, it’s still simply about habits just like it was then, and just like it will be next year.  How about we take time to focus on creating habits that are sustainable and healthy? 

When we create habits and remove emotion, learn what motivates us and what we have control over, we win.  It is that simple.


The 2020 Winter I AM CFK Challenge is all about creating Healthy Habits.  We won’t focus on restriction or temporary lifestyle changes to get “Six Pack Abs or Sweet Gunz.”  

I AM CFK is a set of daily/weekly challenges designed to create lasting, sustainable habits that lead to long term success and yes, “Abs and Gunz” if you so desire but it’s not the focus.

To understand and develop habits, we must first analyze our current behaviors through consistent tracking, identify changes necessary, and incentivize healthy behaviors to replace the less desirable ones.  

Watch this video and read this book to learn more about how habits work.  We are very much creatures of habit no matter how spontaneous we may think we are.

What’s included in th 6 Week Healthy Habits Challenge – $99

*Points must be in by midnight each day.  Tracking is a large part of the Challenge and critical to identifying the Growth Opportunities (formerly known as obstacles).

  • Baseline Fitness Test – Jan 18  (Retest Feb 29)
    • Gymnastics – We’ll test both 1rm Pullups and Max Reps   (If you don’t have pullups, we’ll use Very specific Ring Rows or band if you are close to pullups)
    • Mono-structural – We’ll test your Power/Speed using the 250m Row and 20cal Assault Bike sprint. Mid Endurance will be tested using the 2K row.  (1 Mile run can be subbed for Row)
    • Weightlifting – We’ll test over all Strength using the 1RM Bear Complex and Strength Endurance with 7RM unbroken rounds of Bear Complex.    (We’ll use a Clean Complex option for shoulder problems)  *We wanted to switch this portion for alternating challenges but we really can’t identify a better test!
    • MobilityWe’ll test basic hip, shoulder, and ankle mobility, weekly and daily challenges will be designed for mobility improvement which is critical to long term success and widely ignored unfortunately.
  • Before/After Fit3d
    • We aren’t looking for drastic changes but if you follow the process we will see positive changes for sure.
  • Daily and Weekly Fitness Challenges
    • ​​​​​​​These challenges are rooted in our beliefs of moving often, perfecting basics, addressing ‘growth opportunities’, trying new things, and learning new skills
  • Daily and Weekly Mobility Challenges
    • ​​​​​​​These are not complicated routines but 6-10 minutes per day of focussed work that will pay mad dividends over time.
  • Daily and Weekly Nutrition Challenges
    • ​​​​​​​Sorry folks, the bottom of the pyramid is built on proper nutrition and fueling.  Few results are possible without basic changes
  • Weekly 15 minute CFK Coach Check-ins 
    • This is your time to ask questions and learn to make your own healthy decisions.  Check-Ins are not for coaches to “tell you what to do,” but instead allow you to identify your personal “Growth Opportunities” and get feedback to help you decide for yourself what’s best, based on your goals.


Each I AM CFK Challenge comes with optional Custom Nutrition Support from Corey Church @ EMOM Nutrition   Visit his website for more info.

CFK partners with Emom Nutrition to offer an insane value for our I Am CFK challenge. You will have the option of weekly food log review through the Lose It app by a certified Nutrition Coach and a second option of a Custom Nutrition plan, complete with daily Macros as well as food log review

  • Optional EMOM Nutritional UpGrades
    • $49 = Weekly Food Log Review through Lose It app
    • $99 = Everything above + Custom Nutrition plan, including Starting Macros!

Initial Testing Schedule and Prep: 

Prep Week Training Schedule: Jan 13 – 17

  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: Normal Activity
  • Thursday: Active Recovery Wod (RPE of 6-7)
  • Friday Off or a light row and foam rolling with lots of water but do NOT Workout!

Test Day:  Jan 18, 2020 – 9:45 am

  • 10:00 – 12:00 – Warmup, Testing, Cool Down
    • Bring snacks and Water, belts, lifters, running shoes, wrist wraps, etc… or Nothing.  It’s a test!

Prep Week Training Schedule: Feb 24 – 28

  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: Normal Activity
  • Thursday: Active Recovery Wod (RPE of 6-7)
  • Friday Off or a light row and foam rolling with lots of water but do NOT Workout!

Retest February 29, 2020 – 9:45 to noon

  • 10:00 – 12:00 – Warmup, Testing, Cool Down
    • Bring snacks and Water, belts, lifters, running shoes, wrist wraps, etc… or Nothing.  It’s a test!

How: Click “REGISTER“, sign up, show up, read the Nutrition Guidelines, grocery shop, food prep, complete challenges, create habits, and most importantly win long term!

*We will Crown an overall winner.  However, if you participate in this challenge to completion you will also win.  The points are for motivation, the habits built are the prize.  Take the Challenge!

CFK Supplements – Fat Loss, Muscle Gain, Inflammation and more

Consume Quality Proteins, Veggies, and Fats in proportions that support activity levels but not excess bodyfat!

What’s up CFK?

Let’s talk supplementation with a purpose vs. trying to supplement our way around eating correctly. CFK is a “WHOLE FOODS FIRST” gym and supplements are meant to “supplement” or compliment our current strategy, not “replace” real food or fix bad habits.  
Transparent Labs, Black Market, and Puori have proven themselves to meet our standards. Here’s a break down of my recommendations as well as an outline of my personal supplement regimen.  
Side note: Inflammation and lack of sleep is a real struggle for some folks. Supplementing things like Turmeric, Magnesium, Glutamine, and Post Workout Protein can speed recovery, reduce inflammation, and improve sleep and digestive function. Turmeric, o3, m3, and d3 are recommended for all athletes! 
Adult Male over 30, fairly lean: (This would be me so I’ll start here)  
Goal: Preserve and/or build muscle mass, reduce overall inflammation, and keep Testosterone levels up in an aging body. 
AM: Black Market d-aspartic acid (natural Testosterone booster), creatine (builds muscle), l- citrulline (heart, immune, muscle pump)
Post Workout: 3/4 scoop Mass Gainer, 3/4 scoop 100% Whey or Organic Vegan, Glutamine. (all recovery.  Recover faster, workout more, quicker/better results)
*Eat a full meal about an hour later 
PM: O3 (3/day, 2 grams)*, M3 (3/day for Sleep/Recovery), D3 (3-4/day for various reasons but mainly proper hormone function), ZMO (Natural Testosterone Booster)
*Turmeric mid day with food to reduce Inflammation
Adult Male, not lean:   
Goal: Reduce belly fat as it’s dangerous long term. We do so by resetting hormones, building muscle, and reducing junk calories.  
Same prescription as lean male except post workout we’d do 1-1/2 scoops of 100% Whey or Organic Vegan, drop the Mass Gainer, and increase the amount of Omega 3 to 4 grams/day instead of 2 grams (3 capsules am with food, 3 capsules pm with food)
Adult Female, fairly lean:   
Goal: Preserve or build muscle, keep hormones in check, reduce inflammation.  
O3 (3/day), M3 (3/day before bed), D3 (3/day), 1/2 scoop of Mass Gainer, 3/4 to full scoop of 100% or Organic Vegan.  l-citrulline and creatine could be good if building muscle and gaining strength is appealing to you! (creatine can make you retain water, be aware)
Adult Female, not lean:  
Goal: Reduce belly fat as it’s dangerous long term. We do so by resetting hormones, building muscle, and reducing junk calories.  
Increase O3 from 2 to 4 grams per day (3 capsules in Am with food, 3 capsules Pm with food), M3 (3/day at bedtime), D3 (3/day), full to 1-1/2 scoop of 100% or Vegan, l-citrulline
Full Transparency: As a Coach and business owner my mission for our supplement program is two fold:
  • Provide a service for our Athletes by: 
    • Reducing confusion: Limiting products to essential and useful
    • Creating convenience: Have quality products on hand and extra flavors and special items available via pre-order
    • Provide only quality products by doing the research for our athletes (This is why you have seen brands change.  If a new brand is better/cleaner we make the change)
    • Find the highest Value (not cheapest or most expensive) in each category
  • “Supplement” our income (Pun intended)
*I’m sure there are others but one exception to the replacement rule being Omega 3.  O3 is basically missing from the SAD ( Standard American Diet) and there’s an abundance of Omega 6. Balance between Omega 3 and Omega 6 is critical for decreased inflammation and increased fat loss. I highly recommend sourcing a quality fish oil for omega 3 supplementation.  Puori, Nordic Naturals, SFH, etc…  Do not trust cheap o3.  It’s expensive to source quality o3 and if you see it cheap it will be just that.
**If you are using a different source that Puori, Black Market, or Transparent Labs and would like my help simply email me a picture of the label and we can compare the dosages.  

Hot Topics – Fit3d


We’re over a quarter of the way through 2019 already, and now is probably the time that many of you are questioning the goals you set for the year. Maybe you’re starting to feel like you’re not making the progress you thought you could, or maybe you feel like because you’ve made some good progress that you can take your foot off the gas pedal a little bit. Either way, there’s a lot more that goes into goal setting than just how you’re feeling.


One of the best tools we have to measure progress throughout the year is our Fit3d machine. This is an excellent resource that takes a 3D image of your body and helps you see how you’re doing with your body fat, gains in size through your arms, legs, or chest, or how many inches you’ve lost off of your waist. Using the Fit3d throughout the year helps us keep an accurate, measured record of how we’re all progressing, instead of just going off of the scale at your house or how you think you look in the mirror.


Ask one of your coaches about getting a scan set up today!

Pure Spectrum CBD @ CFK!

CrossFit Knoxville is excited to announce the arrival of Pure Spectrum CBD oils.

What’s up CFK?  I’m absolutely stoked to introduce to you some new products for 2019, starting with Pure Spectrum CBD’s.  Some of you are well versed on CBD oil and the Endocannabinoid system, some may have no clue what this is.


For those not well versed, I have attached a product guide and will include a link to an entire library of peer reviewed articles on the usage of CBD oils in relation to various conditions.  I’ll speak to just a couple to inspire you to click the link and learn about the endocannabinoid system and it’s affects on the body.


In the A’s only:

  • ADHD
  • Alzheimers
  • Autism
  • arthritis
  • anxiety
  • addiction

You can see the power of CBD oil.  The fact that the endocannabinoid system even exists is mind-blowing, let alone the benefits of CBD oil and how it affects your bodily functions.  It’s literally a ‘lock and key’ system where your body has the receptors or “locks” and the plants produce the “keys” to your health and well being by bringing you back to homeostasis.  (google it)


If you have followed me back when I actually posted on FB you will know I’ve been following the medical use of marijuana and CBD for years.  I don’t even want to use the words medical marijuana because of the negative connotations but I did, so keep reading for me to explain.


CBD’s are responsible for most of the powerful healing properties of marijuana and that’s what we’re focussed on here.  CBD’s have literally saved lives in certain conditions such as epilepsy and cancer.  I have been waiting for a product that I could trust to be Organic, possess the potencies claimed, etc..  Basically a company I could trust, and we’ve found it in Pure Spectrum.


**Note: While THC is effective for certain conditions but also makes you “high” and is illegal in some states and we won’t really go into that.   Pure Spectrum CBD oils, salves, and vapor cartridges are THC free.  You won’t fail a drug test or be “high”.


I have been personally using the Pure Spectrum tinctures, salves, and vape pen for about 3 months at this point.  The major benefits have been as follows in order of importance for me:

  • Anxiety – I’m very “high strung” as some of you know!
  • Inflammation – Specifically joint pain relief.
  • Improved Focus – See #1.

I’ll shut up now and provide the links.  Happy reading and look for a usage guide and how to decide how much CBD’s you require in a separate blog post.  Do yourself a favor and do some research and try it out.  There are zero negative affects if it doesn’t work for you and it’s not expensive to try.



Cool Down Inflammation

Hey CFK,


Inflammation is huge.  It effects our workouts, our day-to-day, and our overall livelihood.  It is also a signal and precursor to chronic disease.  Check out this article from CBIZ’s Well Being Newsletter.  If you’d like to see the .pdf version on their site with pretty images, click here!


We often think of inflammation as the redness, burning and swelling that occurs when we cut our skin, burn our mouths eating something hot or get sunburns. These are external signs of inflammation, and we immediately know to cool this inflammation with ice, water, aloe vera or any other number of known remedies.


However, we do not always see or feel inflammation that occurs inside the body until extensive damage has been done. Inflammation is at the core of nearly every chronic disease, including heart disease, high blood pressure, digestive disorders, acid reflux, all autoimmune conditions (e.g., arthritis, Type 1 diabetes, irritable bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, thyroid disease), eye disease (e.g., glaucoma and macular degeneration), Alzheimer’s disease, Type 2 diabetes, many cancers and several other conditions.


Nutrition and lifestyle can be integral in soothing and preventing inflammation. Even in the case of chronic disease that requires medical intervention, nutrition and lifestyle can complement an individual’s medical treatment to mitigate the effects of the condition and possibly to prevent further damage. Here are some ways to cool your inflammation.


  • Eat a primarily plant-based diet, rich in non-starchy vegetables and some fruit. Plant-based diets reduce biomarkers of inflammation, such as C-reactive protein (CRP).


  • Reduce grain and sugar-based carbohydrates. Diets that are overly abundant on grains (whole grains and refined ones) and sugar (real and artificial) are highly inflammatory, causing insulin levels to rise, eventually keeping the hormone from getting the byproduct of glucose (blood sugar) to cells for energy.


  • Eat more monounsaturated fats (found in nuts, seeds, avocados, legumes, olives, olive oil) and Omega-3 fatty acids, which are available in fatty fish (e.g., cod, herring, salmon, sardines), fish oil and in plant sources such as walnuts, chia seeds, flaxseed and others. Omega-3 fatty acids, in particular, have a marked impact on reducing inflammation throughout the body. Americans typically have a 14:1 ratio of Omega-6 fats (found in meat and many grains) to Omega -3 fats. The ratio should be closer to 1:1 to 4:1.


  • Diets high in antioxidants help reduce inflammation as they preserve healthy cells throughout the body. Berries, dark green leafy vegetables and other colorful fruits and vegetables are good sources of antioxidants.


  • Protein is critical to the body’s ability to maintain its blood sugar and insulin levels and, thus, helps prevent inflammation. Aim for efficient sources in grass fed meats, and free range poultry and eggs.


  • With autoimmune conditions especially, consider avoiding major immune system aggravators, including dairy, sugar, gluten and most grains, to reduce the inflammatory cytokines that tend to spike with their consumption.


  • Exercise regularly. You don’t need to be an athlete, but daily, purposeful movement for at least 30 consecutive minutes is essential to your body’s ability to regulate hormones that are keeping your body inflamed, including insulin, cortisol and eicosanoids.


  • Get adequate sleep, aiming for at least eight consecutive hours. Lack of sleep often results in sugar cravings and poor metabolism, and can induce insulin resistance.


  • Lift your spirits and manage chronic stress through mindfulness exercises, laughter, music, physical activity, and connectedness to family and friends, and by removing stress triggers where possible. Insulin, cortisol and inflammatory cytokines spike during periods of stress; these interventions can act a buffers.


Reducing inflammation in our bodies can have a profound effect on how we feel in terms of our physical health and brain/mental health. While it takes daily, deliberate actions and choices to support one’s wellbeing, the impact is often well worth it with reduced symptoms, improved mood, and reversal of disease and overall better quality of life. If you have a chronic health condition, please consult your physician before making any significant diet and lifestyle changes.



Article provide by CBIZ Wellbeing Solutions; Wellbeing Insights issue 36, July 2018. To view full issue of the Wellbeing Insights, please click here.

SOGO 2018 Nutritional Challenge

“Murph” Prep Nutritional Challenges


L1  = STEPS 1-4    Brand new to monitoring Nutrition

L2 = STEPS 1-7     If you are already doing steps 1-4 successfully

L3 = STEPS 1-10   You have a solid base but are ready to hit the next level!

*make sure to check the videos at the bottom for other helpful tips!


Most folks are up for a good Physical Challenge, especially CrossFitters such as yourself.  However, discussing Nutrition can trigger a minor panic attack.  Take this 4 week Challenge and see how changes in Nutrition can greatly impact the way you look, feel, and perform.  When we build our fitness pyramid, Nutrition and Recovery are the base, Not Exercise, that’s second.



Instead of rules, here are some general guidelines or ‘Best Practices’ that have been proven time and time again and you will see portions in all the popular “diets” on the internet.  Some guidelines are harder than others and require preparation time.  If you don’t have time, consider a meal prep service such as Naked Foods.




Excess sugar, sodas, fast food, processed foods with no expiration dates, trans fats, candy bars, snack cakes, etc… are known by all to not be good for you so you won’t see them covered here.  If you decide to make a choice that doesn’t fit these ‘best practices’ then Bless It and Own It!  Don’t make justifications, blame someone else, or complain that your are weak.  Take responsibility and move on to the next Great choice!


Read through these and check out the videos at the bottom for some extra tips!


  1. Eat your Veggies, Especially Greens!    

Make two or three giant pans of veggies in the oven with Olive Oil and Sea Salt.  Broccoli, Cauliflower, Asparagus, Peppers, Onions, Sweet Potatoes, Bok Choy, etc…  Once cooked, it’s very easy to add a couple handfuls to any meal.  For Greens, sauté them on the stove top with olive oil or some other sort of quality fat, maybe adding some Apple Cider vinegar and chicken broth.


*If you don’t eat greens on a regular basis (4-5 times/week), then add a quality greens supplement.  Most have good probiotics as well as some enzymes, both of which are very beneficial to a healthy gut.  We carry G3 from Puori or you can get Health Force Super Foods “Vitamineral Green”  from the Health Shoppe.  Read the instructions well and build up over time.




2. HYDRATE!  Not just drink water.  
Too much water without electrolytes can cause a sodium imbalance and your body will flush moisture from your tissues (dehydration) to correct it.  What this means to you:  Drink 1/2 your bodyweight in ounces/day and throw a small pinch of sea salt (not regular salt) in there for some electrolytes.  Trader Joe’s carries a Pink Himalayan Sea Salt grinder that works well.  Just a couple twists into a Nalgene or other water carrier should suffice.




I’m not a fan of the word Restriction and I believe it’s what causes the Panic associated with Nutrition changes.  Instead let’s focus on just eating enough.  When you increase your activity but don’t feed your body, your brain perceives that you are in a famine state and adds to it’s reserves (fat) by storing as many calories as it can for future use.  This won’t happen in a short fast but if you are historically calorie restricted it will drastically slow your metabolism and ability to burn fat.


If you are consistently taking in more calories than you can burn, this also causes you to store excess bodyfat.  Think of your food as fuel and eat at levels that support your activity but not the extra fat storage from over or under consumption.  (The Fit3d and a coach can help you establish baseline needs)


Eat 3-4 times per day, consuming adequate amounts.


Palm size piece of protein (one and a half for larger males)
Two fists of veggies

  • One fist sized portion of Complex Carbs such as Sweet Potatoes, Steel Cut Oats, or Brown Rice, Bananas or other fruits but not Juices.
  • Green leafy and cruciferous veggies you can pretty much eat as much as you want.
  • If you can follow these Simple guidelines you will win.  Being Healthy and Fit is really easy if you only eat real food in these proportions 3-4 times per day.
  • For those looking to add size, increase the meal frequency to 4-5 and keep the same portion sizes.



4. DON’T CUT THE “Healthy” FAT!  
You should eat at least one Thumb Sized portion of fat at every meal.  It’s critical that you make healthy fat choices.  Mix and match your fats just like your protein sources since they have different profiles and benefits.  Avoid processed fats, margerines, vegetable oils, canola, partially hydrogenated etc… Not Good.


Choose from these:

  • Unsalted Kerry Gold Grass Fed Butter (Trader Joes)
  • Organic cold pressed Coconut oil (Trader Joes is best deal)
  • Extra Virgin Cold Pressed Olive oil (again trader joes)
  • Fat from pasture raised, grass fed animals
  • Avocado
  • Coconut milk (from a can, avoid extra ingredients)

*If you are eating Non-Grass Fed Beef and Pork- (grain finished or corn finished, not GRASS FED) buy the leanest cuts and trim the visible fat.  The fat carries the bulk of hormones, antibiotics and other bad stuff attributed to commercial meats.








Starting your day with lower to no carbs will avoid the insulin spike and the carb craving roller coaster many people get stuck on.  Controlling Insulin will help lower inflammation and promote quicker recovery between workouts, as well as fat loss.




Your body doesn’t have a need for extra carbohydrates on recovery days.  Eat your normal amounts of veggies, fats, and quality proteins and leave your starchy items and fruit for training days.  This little step can lead to big gains but dial in 4 and 5 before worrying about 6 and 7.




For quicker GAINZ in fat loss, save your starchy or simpler carbs to pre and post workout meals.  This will provide adequate carbs to fuel training but not enough to store excess bodyfat.  The rest of the day you will lower your carbs by eating mostly veggies for carbs.  You should experiment for yourself but I have found that many people including myself, respond very well to this.








Too much data that shows there’s a link between gluten and inflammation.  Both gluten and dairy spike your insulin and insulin control is the real secret to leaning out and building muscle both.


Save our powdered proteins for Post workout, when the Insulin spike is a normal mechanism for replacing lost fuel in the muscles.


*I love milk and cookies as much as the next guy but if you want lean muscle, high performance, and a lack of fat on your abdomen; it’s best you replace these with quality carbs and veggies.




9. Avoid Artificial Sweetners and added Sugars
If you want something sweet use real ingredients like honey, bananas, whatever, just don’t use artificial sweeteners.  Please don’t mistake the previous statement to mean it’s ok to eat sugar or honey or any other carbs all the time.  It’s best to ween off sugar entirely.  Once this is done, the cravings subside and the fat loss begins!  (see #7 if you want something sugary, post workout is when it fits best)


*Above 70% Dark Chocolate in small amounts can be used to curb sugar cravings.




10. Alcohol is not my Friend 


If you want to be lean, recover fast, and look young forever, Alcohol is not your friend.  If you are going to drink, use moderation and try drinks without extra sugar and very few ingredients.  Skinny Girl Margarita, Vodka Soda with limes, etc….   Basically the cleanest alcohol you can get with some sort of citrus to blunt the insulin response, and something bubbly to make it taste good.  Soda water is better than tonic because of sugar.  Have fun, be responsible.


I hope this helps!


Johnny Davis