Six Ways CrossFit Can Benefit Runners

Photo: Chris Bischow

Dial In Your Nutrition Program

In an article published on September 26 on Independent Online, Dr. Timothy Noakes, author of “The Lore of Running” and inarguably one of the most influential sports scientists on the sport of running said that those who own a copy of his book should “tear out the section on nutrition.” Noakes has long advocated a high-carb diet for runners but no longer. Noakes told IO, “In my case, most of the carbohydrate that I ingest is directed into my fat cells by the action of insulin each time I eat carbohydrate. Then the insulin locks the fat in my fat cells and prevents its release as energy for as long as I continue to eat a high-carbohydrate diet. This leads to progressive weight gain, continual hunger, lethargy, and in time, pancreatic failure and the onset of an irreversible and universally fatal condition, adult-onset diabetes. But the solution is simple – cut down the secretion of insulin by eating a minimum of carbohydrate.” This is the essential thrust of the basic nutrition program that is taught at the 4,000-plus CrossFit gyms now in operation. What Noakes has observed in research and also in his own health correlated directly with my experience and the before and after blood tests. In my case, the change in diet had a surprisingly positive effect in terms of my state of energy and my body fat composition. For runners interested in guidance into the diet Noakes is now supporting, CrossFit coaches can not only teach you the basics but set up a situation in which you can test and measure the effects on how well or not it works for you.

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